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Brockley garages to become London's first 'invisible house'
Two disused Brockley garages are to be demolished and replaced with London's first "invisible" house in a scheme with an estimated £650,000 value.
With several plans for living space above or below the garages rejected by Lewisham Council planners for being out of character with the conservation area, the scheme now uses exterior mirrors on its upper storey which aim to camouflage the building with its surroundings.
The Manor Avenue garages were bought by a neighbour for just £9,000 two years ago and, with £250,000 to be spent on the project, should see them make a bumper profit.
Owner Kevin Morton said: "We’d been trying to build a house in Lewisham and on this particular plot of land for a long time but given the complications faced, we were really unsure whether this would even become a reality.
"We can now start building a house that is completely different to any of the houses in the surrounding area, or even in London itself."
Billed as an eco-home, the three-storey, two-bed property will include a subterranean basement and a roof terrace. Heat and power will come from renewable energy sources while its "super insulated" structure means the owners will only need to put the heating on for a few days of the year.
It has been designed by architects JaK Studio who originally came up with an idea to build a house on stilts, rejected by planners.
Founding partner Jacob Low said: "This project has certainly been an exercise in perseverance and represents a process full of dialogue with my clients, Lewisham planning department and various specialist consultants – as a practice we are proud to have at last won planning on such a constrained site with a bold proposal we believe is a truly unique solution in both conceptual and planning terms."
Work is due to start this summer and will be completed next spring.
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