4.5×20 House / AHL architects associates

© Anh Duc Le

Architects: AHL architects associates
Location: Hanoi,
Architects In Charge: Hung Dao , Tuan Anh Mai, Son Chu, Hieu Hoang, Nghia Mai, Tung Nguyen, Truc Anh Nguyen
Area: 90.0 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Anh Duc Le

© Anh Duc Le

This house was designed for a young family with one children and grand mother, located in Van Phu new urban area in Ha Noi, Vietnam. The existing design is boring (like thounsands of other houses in Vietnam): lost of natural lighting and ventilation; simple space with core (staircase and toilet) in the middle and two bedrooms at two sides. Client (young family) needs something different from the existing. They need their own house, their style. This situation requires a smart solution for traffic, thereby creating interesting solutions of space, daylight  and natural ventilation.

© Anh Duc Le

Based on their requirements, the program is quite simple: garage (for 2 cars), kitchen on the 1st floor, bedroom (for grand mother) and living room on the 2nd floor, master bedrooms on the 3rd floor, small guest room, sky terrace and worship on the 4th floor…but they need the architetcts focus on the creation of public spaces.

© Anh Duc Le

With a simple slogan “ traffic creates space and function”, we started by changing the location of staircase. Unique and continuous spaces is proposed based on the new staircase. The staircase and corridors were designed not as a simple and boring path but as a continuous and sequential space which becomes living space.

© Anh Duc Le

Along with identifying new locations for staircase, the voids is also determined for natural lighting and ventilation.An autrium in the middle of house was created to bring daylight to lobbies and all rooms without window to outside. In addition, that allows full connection between the 4 levels of the house vertically.

The central space is the bigest volume where a double height living room locates, is surrounded by opening staircase, autrium and big windows. 

Cite: "4.5×20 House / AHL architects associates" 26 Feb 2013. ArchDaily. Accessed 16 Sep 2014. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=336393>


  1. Thumb up Thumb down +1

    In Portugal, it will be impossible to make this typology due legal restrictions on the number of steps of the staircase without landing.
    It’s a problem because in these type of small houses and small place is the best solution.

    • Thumb up Thumb down +1

      In this house, each staircase has 19 steps. There are 3 staircases for traffic conection from ground floor to the 4th floor. It’s a smart solution for a typical townhouse.

  2. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    Just wondering the height from floor to floor and how the steps were fixed to the walls? Otherwise clean cut and a nice ramp to the front door.

  3. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    According to me, the movement is not really good.
    Anw I like the material you choosed.

  4. Thumb up Thumb down -9

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

  5. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    good job!
    i think _for an architect, the most perfect thing is meeting a good guest, they’ll pay for our love and imagine.

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