narrow block

Narrow blocks or odd shaped sites can present both a unique opportunity and challenge simultaneously, which requires a specific set of skills, knowledge and expertise to navigate when designing a home.

Design, forethought and planning are the keys to unlocking the potential of narrow sites. A constrained site can quickly lead to a compromised outcome if the necessary time has not been devoted at the outset – to investigation, strategy and exploration/experimentation. This critical understanding from the beginning paves the way for innovation. Careful consideration of site layout of narrow blocks can not only overcome the inherent constraints, but also create new opportunities and unique outcomes.


The challenges in designing for a narrow block and how those solutions are met are also what make the design a one off & special. Narrow block sites are usually not suited to volume built and set plan designs as they do not take into account the orientation & limitations that are unique to every site.

Designing on a narrow site is a challenge due its restricted nature, whereby the site and everything around it is likely to have an impact to ultimately define what can be achieved. The architect’s skill is to discover an optimum solution within these complexities to give full consideration and balance to the many factors that impact the design:

  • Establish to available siting of the building envelope in accordance required set-backs, easements and other constraints before the design process commences
  • Fully understand the site in its context : both in opportunities (views, and site features) and constraints (consideration of neighbours and nearby features, including amenity, overlooking, privacy )
  • Passive solar design principles addressed in the design to optimise the orientation to ensure enough light is let in & solutions created if this is a challenge
  • Spatial planning and place making to ensure the home and its layout is functional, ergonomic and spacious
  • expertise

    At Destination Living our team of architects, interior designers and draftspersons are highly experienced in designing homes on difficult blocks and narrow sites. Our in-house team includes cost estimators & building experts to ensure that we look at the project holistically so that construction issues that can typically arise from building on a narrow block are factored in upfront as part of your overall project cost.


    The investment in comprehensive planning in the design phase will ensure the delivery of a unique architect designed home tailored to your individual needs, your site as well as your aesthetic, lifestyle and project budget.