RIBA’s 2016 House of the Year


Christy Zhou

(Please watch the video to help understand this)

UNITED KINGDOM – Richard Murphy’s “box of tricks” was nominated by the Royal Institute of British Architects for their 2016 House of the Year Award in December. This house won the title because of the unique exterior and amazing “tricks” inside the house.

Richard Murphy, a British chartered accountant and political economist, a long-standing member of the Tax Justice Network, and professor at City University London, was responsible for constructing this house.

It seems like a garage for the other bigger houses around it since it is so small. It looks pretty difficult to build a house on this kind of land because it is a landslip, and it is at the crossing.

Unlike the surrounding buildings, this one seems out of place.  The house looks just like a box, however,it has 5 floors.

It is only 541ft2, and for the area can really be used for a house is only 217 ft2. However, it is full of “tricks” inside the house. Murphy’s house, however, not only has three bedrooms, a living room, kitchen, study room, basement, and a garage, he even has a roof terrace.

The whole roof can be opened by pulling some ropes, lighting up the house instantly.

Murphy also added a intricate bookshelf, that, at the pull of a lever, can open small windows in an alternating checker pattern.  He also designed a mailbox that would connect to a shaft in the library so he’d never have to leave the room.

“Although a small property, it was deceivingly large inside due to the clever use of space. Every room contained a surprise and the attention to detail was exceptional. The roof terrace was a real oasis of calm and I loved the long list of environmentally friendly touches. A true pleasure to visit and I would imagine a lot of fun to live in.” (Philip Thorn, 2016)

Cynthia Wang, freshman, thinks this house is great because it used its shortage to make the best part of the house.

Andrew Armstrong, senior, believes this house to be an amazing feat.

“This is one one of the coolest and most fascinating environmental houses ever… until it gets dark outside.”

It seems that there is no normal place in his house, for tricks are everywhere.

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HGTlhF0vOD8

Source: http://www.archdaily.com/801908/inside-the-murphy-house-ribas-2016-house-of-the-year