A factory of galvanization in Saint-Josse in Brussels is transformed into 7 apartments and 6 studios for artists. Each apartment is different, from studio type to four bedroom apartments, with an independent or integrated studio. The dwellings are either duplex or full-feet, either with a loft bed or a cellar. The dwellings and the studios will be made available at a reasonable price through a social services estate agent.

The old factory was demolished except for two buildings in masonry work, each occupying a corner of the plot. The new timber volume winds across the plot, climbing or crowning the existing buildings. The distortions of the building release spaces to accommodate the activities of the community including one vast roof terrace and a central courtyard.

The common spaces are connected by several external pathways with entrances to the apartments. They can accommodate artists' works or performances, outdoor dining around the barbecue, or simply be conducive to discussions among neighbours, contemplation or reading under a tree in the yard.

Along the street, the timber volume levitates, clinging to the existing walls and only supported by some thin columns, allowing a visual connection between the street and the activities in the courtyard. The building has been conceived using ecologically sound materials, with an integrated system to collect rainwater.

Client : Private

Place : Brussels, Be

Architecture : Shin Bogdan Hagiwara, Thierry Decuypere, Jorn Aram Bihain (V+)

Structure : Bureau d'études Weinand

Security : GBAr

Photography : Pierre Coppens

April 2010
Categories: Architecture, housing
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