When it comes to private housing design, the main challenge VMX sets for itself is to express the character and personal desires of the future inhabitants. The Walta-Elmers family commissioned VMX Architects to design their house on ‘Kleine Rieteiland’, one of the islands of the Amsterdam district of IJburg. The client, longing for good quality outdoor life, wanted a spacious, open house with plenty of light. By studying several models, the concept of a ‘living-landscape’ was chosen. It is with this structure that all requirements could be solved, offering a large living space, a garden, a large amount of privacy and full views to the surroundings.
The plot measures 8 by 30 meters. The urban plan challenged all architects to freely experiment with the full space of the plot, keeping in mind several restrictions such as building coverage and the fact that parking should be solved within the plot. The concept of living landscape maximizes the spatial potential of this plot by using the full plot in an efficient manner.
The ground floor, containing the living area and kitchen, in a split level typology, has the ability to completely open to the outside and thereby create a partly covered living-landscape. This landscape is articulated with a higher and lower level. Under the higher level is a multifunctional cellar. The bedroom level is accessed by a spiral staircase. A round roof-light above the stairs brings light into the living-landscape. The façade on the first level is completely closed with patio blocks. This suggests a floating box over the open landscape on the ground level.