SOCIAL PASSIVE APARTMENTS AND SOCIAL LOW-ENERGY DWELLINGS | OPEN COMPETITION ORGANISED BY THE CLIENT, 1ST PLACE
AWARDS Be.exemplary Brussels 2012: laureate
The classic 19th-century urban typology of the mansion with a ‘carriage porch’ – as we often find in this neighbourhood – is used to create a densified housing complex. The faceted volume of the apartment building in the front is generated by the clever combination of the adjacent building heights and cornice profiles. The façades and roofs of the project are developed in white zinc, perfectly matching the white natural stone of the houses in the neighbourhood. The rear building welcomes three dwellings under an extrusion of the adjacent industrial shed roofs. These units are accessible via a green inner courtyard. They also have their own garden and enjoy zenithal daylight through skylights.
Thanks to the generous flow of daylight, the spacious private outside spaces and the carefully tuned privacy settings, a housing typology is created with high spatial quality. Social housing thus becomes an integral part of the city, without any form of stigmatization or visible spatial deprivation. The project engages deliberately in an intense relationship with its context and uses the existing qualities such as sunlight and views to create a material support for social integration and cohesion.
The real ecology of this project lies in diverse aspects: high quality living in the city; high density combined with privacy; building in the inner area of an urban block.