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Putting On Stairs

By The TribeAugust 17, 2018ArchitectureProjects

We are currently in the middle of construction on a project in Bronte and have been wildly excited about the curved staircase coming to life at the center of this home. The staircase is a bespoke iteration tying in multiple arcs featured throughout the dwelling and it is an important counterpoint to the existing entry above it. We really wanted to show you some pictures of the progression of this design, which you’ll see below, but before hand thought you might benefit from some thinking on stair design from an Architect’s point of view.

Stairs for Circulation

Circulation is often a key challenge in architecture and staircases. When space planning it becomes an important element we use in creating flow and rhythm in space. While serving a practical purpose, staircases are also an aesthetic response to the problem of getting people to unreachable areas above or below.

At Stubbs Design Tribe our design approach is based in three priorities: client, context and budget. We look carefully at all these elements in the brief before deciding how and what approach we suggest for a project. Depending on those outcomes, a staircase becomes the hero of the space or other times, a quiet partner.

The 4 Main Stair Issues

Once your project budget has been identified, there are four other critical components of your future staircase that should be discussed with your Architect.

  1. Location
    Consider how the staircase can best be positioned in the design? What are the gradients needed for the style desired? Is there adequate lighting? What are the safety considerations regarding balustrade compliance, tread depth and access to exits in case of emergency?
  2. Style
    Straight, ¼ turn, winding, u-shaped, spiral, curved… what is the best design style to meet your desires as well as the needs (context) of the space? Save and discuss images that inspire you with your Architect. Which balustrade designs best work with the style desired?
  3. Materials
    What materials best serve the design? For example, do you need steel if the staircase is cantilevered, and is this purely structural or beautified and expressed? Who is using the staircase? Elderly clients or clients with children may require specific tread finishes for safety and security.
  4. Regulations
    Imagination may be limitless but Australia has very strict regulations when it comes to staircase construction. A good architect will understand how to best use these restrictions to overcome any pedestrian outcomes and create for you a staircase that serves the aesthetics of your project.

Hope you found this useful and now, check out our curves in Bronte!

Posted by Jennifer

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