House as Recourse

Experimental Volume 24,9m x 17,7m / 5 floors / Housing for ca. 30 people / Hamburg

Material resources do not only exist in their natural place of origin, we can find a majority in our built environment. A building isn’t only its form, it should be also seen as a resource. A principle of our design was the idea of seeing permanence not in the building or the form of combined material, but rather in the material itself.

Image work detail

We worked with four main topics: recyclable materiality, deconstructable details, climate conditions and a housing cooperative. The compact volume offered a perfect experimental space concerning sustainability. By using degradable material and trying out deconstructable details, we could test a different astatic. Integrating climate conditions we approached each side of the building differently. It created new atmospheres, forms and images. Thinking about different forms of living connected with our design principle of sustainability, led us to debating different room constellations. A focus on a range of different sizes of flats, rhythms- and fluent combinations of rooms was our result.

The buildings main structural elements are a timber framework, a core out of clay and a slate facade. The frameworks, as well as the ceilings, are made of wooden boards, which are doweled together. The clay core ensures thermal comfort in all flats. The facade out of slate protects the wooden structure. A surrounding buffer zone reacts differently to each direction with wind and sun. Either it prevents the building from overheating or from cooling out. By using another passive strategy of air conditioning we placed two solar chimneys on the rooftop. When the pyramids on top of the building heat up, used air gets sucked up and exits the apartments while fresh air follows. The openings in the facade react on sun, wind and noise. To prevent the building from overheating we installed sunshades in different angles and length in order of the suns position. Due to bad ground conditions we elevated the house. It’s standing on wooden poles, which are rammed into the earth. The ground floor offers a variety of uses and therefor follows a main concept of diversity within one building. The core provides space for the staircase, the flats entrances and for the bathrooms of each apartment. We designed 4 different types of flats. There is the smallest flat for singles or small families, which focuses on a diagonal sequence of two lighter rooms that braces a third room of a warmer atmosphere. The second type is arranged through one half of the building. A set of smaller and bigger, common and private, lighter and warmer rooms is aligned between two facades, creating a long view. The third type is the maisonnette apartment. It connects two floors and refers to the diagonal. The last type is the circuit. This apartment covers one whole floor and has two big communal areas on each side. This apartment type could be used as a shared apartment for elderly people. All apartments have their own terraces inside the buffer zones. They can be opened up and work like balconies or function as an extension of the inside rooms. The rooftop features a terrace and the laundry room for the whole house on the insides of the solar chimneys.