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Slab House / Bureau de Change Architects

Slab House / Bureau de Change Architects

© Ben Blossom                © Ben Blossom                © Ben Blossom                © Ben Blossom                + 9

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© Ben Blossom
© Ben Blossom

Text description provided by the architects. The focal point of the project is a concrete waffle shaped roof, which sits aloft the new living area. Its pre-fabricated peaks and troughs create trenches for rooftop planting, softening the volume, establishing a connection with the leafy surroundings and creating pleasing views from the floors above. From the garden, the roof trenches are out of sight, giving the immediate effect of a simple concrete slab, which contrasts with the texture of the original building. 

© Ben Blossom
© Ben Blossom

The underside of the new roof is exposed to create the living room ceiling, its pronounced ‘beams’ created by the sunken roof planters above. The motion of the waffle ceiling creates a satisfying rhythm, which also offers a logical position for a substantial skylight that traverses the full width of the extension. 

Section
Section

This strip of natural light illuminates the kitchen, which would otherwise be overcast by its position, set back within the footprint of the original house. Bureau de Change Director Billy Mavropoulos said: ‘We wanted to create a volume, whose form would be meaningful both inside and out. Inside, the motion of the roof slab breaks up the minimal surfaces of living area. Outside, it creates appealing views through hollows and humps, which bring nature and concrete into immediate proximity.

© Ben Blossom
© Ben Blossom

Although the living and kitchen areas are open plan, a selective palette of materials has been used to visually define these spaces and create an atmospheric contrast. In the living area, the materiality of the ceiling is echoed in concrete flooring, which stretches to meet the threshold of the kitchen. There, it creeps up the face of the kitchen island and turns back on itself to create a sculptural addition, in the form of a breakfast bar. 

Plan
Plan

The boundary of the kitchen is marked graphically, by a transition into rich monochromatic blue that floods the surfaces of the space, including its resin floor. The concrete appears to force its way into the kitchen’s footprint, creating a pathway around which the resin floor wraps. Within the kitchen, monolithic volumes have a masking effect, concealing ample storage on one side and a cloakroom on the other. This allows the monochrome quality of the space to take the lead. Door edges are cleaved back to create geometric insets, which form handles, and whose elongated shape are repeated on the ceiling to create embedded lighting. 

© Ben Blossom
© Ben Blossom

Product Description. Although the living and kitchen areas are open plan, a selective palette of materials has been used to visually define these spaces and create an atmospheric contrast. In the living area, the materiality of the ceiling is echoed in concrete flooring, which stretches to meet the threshold of the kitchen. There, it creeps up the face of the kitchen island and turns back on itself to create a sculptural addition, in the form of a breakfast bar. The boundary of the kitchen is marked graphically, by a transition into rich monochromatic blue that floods the surfaces of the space, including its resin floor. The concrete appears to force its way into the kitchen’s footprint, creating a pathway around which the resin floor wraps. 

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About this office
Cite: "Slab House / Bureau de Change Architects" 25 Nov 2016. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/800085/slab-house-bureau-de-change-architects> ISSN 0719-8884

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