204 Beech Avenue
There are only a few houses on any
I owned 209 Beech across the road for a time, and used the small enclosed porch above its entrance as a studio. While I was there, I remember painting a small watercolour of the view from it of 204 and its neighbours. It is not nearly as good as my memory of it, but it does show 204 in context: all three interesting houses, but 204 clearly the more historic and interesting.
While I have sincere sympathy for the circumstances the Teehan's face, the only thing I can see about the site that recommends it for their accessible house design is the width of the lot - level access is available only from the back. They may, of course, also be attracted to this site by other attributes like the setting, a lovely tree-lined street, surrounded by the sort of houses that give the neighbourhood (that they have chosen as their own) its character!
I am an architect and have worked in
I like modernist buildings - I do them! That does not mean that I believe the context of a building should not influence/inspire its design, or that we shouldn't treasure and maintain the best of our architectural heritage.
Geoff Teehan said on his website that they had considered re-renovating their Elmer house to make it accessible, but chose not to because that would be such a 'waste'. However nice the house, and the design and quality of the work they put into it, I don't believe it is one the 'character' houses in the Beach. To replace 204 with a modern building - completely out of character with its context - would be more than a significantly greater waste.
I hope you are successful in preventing the destruction of your old home, and I hope the 'spectre' of a heritage designation only serves to increase the value of the house, allowing the Teehan's to find a more appropriate site in the area to build a house that suits their needs.