On Channel 4’s Grand Designs, a London architect chose Saniflo to bring his dreams to life.
The sheer creativity of the design, and the situation that inspired it, should energise anyone who ever dreamed of building a place of their own.
Joe Stuart is the design engineer behind Joe Stuart Industrial Design (JSID). He might only be 28, but besides running his own business, he’s also managed to build his own house. It’s a small but perfectly formed two bedroom town house. It’s unique on every level, and it’s such a grand design that it was featured on Channel 4’s Grand Designs.
The split-level house has six half-floors, and it’s based at Warehome Mews in Canning Town, London. It took four years to design and build.
A Small Plot of Land
Joe was motivated to build his own home because he and his girlfriend, Lena, were struggling to afford a home in London while paying enormous rents to sustain their city jobs. In 2012 Joe spotted a tiny plot of land, the site of a former coffin workshop. He applied for planning permission to build what turned out to be the smallest two bedroom house in London.
The house complies to home building regulations literally by centimetres. The plot measured just 38 square metres, so a lot of creative thinking was needed to make best use of the limited space available.
Making the Most of a Smaller Space
Despite having very little space to work with, Joe managed to create a surprisingly spacious and contemporary build. He dug down to form a basement and ultimately built six half-floors, creating room for two bedrooms and – incredibly – two bathrooms.
The first bathroom is gravity-fed. The second, though, was originally designed to be a laundry, and it presented certain logistical problems. It’s an industrial-design wetroom with a shower, a basin, and a WC. It sits half-a-floor down from street level, so it needed a pump to take the waste to a discharge point.
The pump Joe chose? The Sanicubic Pro 2 macerator. It’s so powerful and so versatile that as well as managing all the waste from the various appliances in this underground wetroom, it also handles the waste from a basement washing machine. It even features additional outlets for the connection of more appliances in the future.
Future Proof Builds
Joe ensured nothing but the highest quality in every aspect of his build. The result is a unique future proof creation that’s truly been built to last.
So why did Joe choose Saniflo? And why specifically the Sanicubic Pro 2?
There are other smaller Saniflo pumps that can handle the waste we will generate. However, the appeal of this product was the dual motors. If one of them ever fails, the other will assume the workload. This way we will still be able to use the bathroom and appliances while we wait for repair or spare.
The Saniflo pump actually enabled us to install a second bathroom, which adds value to our home. The unit is plumbed into the basement and it sits behind cupboard doors to insulate the noise. However, I have to say that it is surprisingly quiet anyway.
I installed it myself, and it was simple and straightforward. Because of the multiple connection points we will undoubtedly be plumbing more appliances into the unit in the future.
This pump is an excellent solution for properties that have underground rooms, and it was really cost-effective too.
The house is clad in cedar and bricks. It features thick walls with high-spec insulation, a triple-glazed skylight, and an ultra-low energy heating and hot water system. As a result, the house requires very little energy to run.
With no sky-high rents to pay, minimal heating bills, and a valuation greater than the build cost, the project is clearly a glowing success on every level.
New Opportunities for Comfortable Living
Creative use of space may become increasingly important in future years, as both population sizes and property prices continue to grow.