- Principal Architect: Godrige Samuel (MMGS Architects)
- Project Architect: Chathurika Kulasinghe
- Location: Colombo 03, Sri Lanka
- Area: 45 m2
- Project Year: 2017
- Contractor: Pasalka Builders & Decorators (Pvt.) Ltd
- Photographer: Ramitha Watareka
The Perahera Mawatha Housing scheme overlooking the Beira Lake was built in the late 1970s by the National Housing Development Authority (NHDA) originally for a shanty settlement but was later opened to others for outright purchase. Lavan, a Sri Lankan born Brit, took over a housing unit three years ago from his grandfather who was one of the early buyers. The property, sitting on a 1.6 perch land with a floor area of 390 square feet, was completely uninhabitable due to over-flowing sewers, leaks in waste water lines, ill-ventilated toilet and kitchen, and decayed doors, windows and mossy walls. With illegal, haphazard extensions all around, this unit was revamped into a cozy studio apartment.
The cross walls were removed, converting the space into a single bedroom with activities separated by a play of levels. The rear space was opened up and an enclosed courtyard, the main source of light and ventilation. was created. An antique window, a sculptural Dan tree (Syzygium caryophyllatum), aluminum pergolas and a built-in bench with niche lights create the desired ambience in this outdoor sit-out. The outer walls of the neighbouring houses were painted and the common pathway, paved and planted, thus enhancing the surrounding neighbourhood as well.