Following the path set by the previous studies, the current design was simplified in order to achieve a larger palette of spatial configurations that are varying from a total opening towards Place de l’Université to partial or total enclosure.
In order to reach this goal of a highly flexible house, all the partitions of the space have been designed to different levels of flexibility, considering the amount of time spent for each activity, the time of the day meant for that activity and the possibility to make use of its fixtures for public gatherings or events.
LIGHT, MEDIUM OR HEAVY DIVISION
The need for spatial separation has different levels of expectations, such as offering a simple visual separation, whose purpose is basically to split the room and offer the right dimension for a certain activity.
This separation might be light, medium or heavy, depending on its requested nature. Some divisions need to fulfil an acoustic separation, others only a visual separation to assure a certain level of intimacy. Heavy walls are needed to protect from the outside climate.
Light division: f.i. textile such as a curtain can be used as a light visual division of the space and is only to be adopted in the interior.
Some walls can be pulled down and become a floor. In this case, the element has a double agenda, and needs to comply both appropriate resistance for stepping over it and a finishing which is suitable for a wall.
...FROM A WALL INTO A STAGE
As we envisioned the house to be transformed at times into a single continuous space. The two closed volumes, the residential and the public unit, are opening one towards the other with leaning divisions, transforming the exterior walls into elevated decks.
The leaning mechanism is to be operated manually by using simple systems based on pulleys. More robust than the light divisions, the leaning walls are able to provide visual, climatic and noise protection simultaneously.
The sliding divisions, facing Place de l’Université, are the exterior filters of the house. These are to open the house in a sequential or total manner, in order to generate a smooth extension of the plaza.
By using the same systems, both the residential and the public unit can freely open or close towards the plaza or the patio with the sliding and leaning partitions. Every unit can operate independently from the other.
The organisation of the house has been simplified.
In the same system, both units are now independent entities with the same capacity of being transformed, extended or closed for private either/or public activities.
SAME YET DIFFERENT
In the interior, the rectangular space can be split or opened with light textile divisions, suitable for a frequent use. The sleeping hardware, at times the largest piece in a house, can be elevated up to ceiling level in order to facilitate a continuous floor plan and the possible extension towards the patio and plaza. By doing so, cooking activities could become part of public use during events. One of both units hosts on its roof a terrace that can serve at times for both public and private use.
The other unit (the one without a terrace, but with a shed like pitched roof) envisioned to host gatherings, public events, lectures or exhibitions is larger and higher than the previous design study. In the inside, the space is emptied of any permanent hardware or partition, while the shed roof has been adopted in order to catch and direct the light accordingly.
One of the topics addressed in the project, is the possibility to extend the house. We will use this unit in order to show how Petite Maison can be further adapted to the needs of a larger family. The manner in which this feature will be curated is still in discussion.
1. Choice of material and technologies: The appropriate use of materials (steel, wood, concrete) for the structure is to be decided. What structure for the different roof-types? How much material is suitable to provide more or less division and weight?
2. The height of the roof: How much flexibility is needed to open partially the roof above the terrace, in order to lower the roof at an appropriate level.
3. Removable fixtures: The kitchen unit could become partially mobile or removable.
4. Framing the landscape: The gesture of partially closing towards the parking is to be reconsidered or defined in detail.
5. The possibility to switch the leaning and level divisions with the sliding division is to be considered. In this way, an extension towards the plaza and Maison du Savoir is generated.
6. Double use: Regarding the leaning and level division, we have to work on the double use of floor and wall.
7. The possibility to add a fireplace is to be considered too.
8. Flexible storage: Regarding the division of the public unit, a shelf on rails that can be stored in the back would be a suitable solution for storing and dividing.
9. Synergy: a bathroom which is open for public use might be set in place or a synergy with the public toilets of the university should be considered.
10. How to bring in the garden/trees into the house?
On the 26.03.2021 the design team of the PETITE MAISON will present the preliminary design to the all the partners, sponsors and experts of the project.
Stay up-dated with our next post!
All the best, Carole, Sophie and Dragos