Design TeamRok Jereb u.d.i.a., Blaž Budja u.d.i.a., Nina Majoranc u.d.i.a.
Structural EngineeringAndrej Blatnik u.d.i.g./Plata d.o.o.
H V A CMarko Mervič d.i.s./Marko Mervič s.p.
Electrical EngineeringPrimož Poje u.d.i.e., Tomaž Vrčon eč. teh./Avelis d.o.o.
Traffic Regulations And LandscapingGašper Janežič v.o.k./Aspekt plus d.o.o.
SignageŽiga Culiberg u.d.o
Construction SupervisionVinko Kralj d.i.g./Vinko Kralj s.p.
ContractorsAdaptacije vzdrževanje d.o.o. ; Atlas oprema d.o.o.
ClientMinistry of Labour, Family and Social Affairs
Text description provided by the architects. Headline
Mothers home is a safe haven. A stepping stone for mothers with dificulties. A chance of respite for their children. And a sense of home for their small fragile families.
Architecture follows these statements and is trynig to give form to inteweaving dualities of this social programme.
Mothers home is part of social programme of Ministry of Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities of Slovenia and partially co-founded by Municipality of Ljubljana. Its goal is to lend a helping hand to mothers with young children in social difficulties.
The content is divided between institutional and technical part of the programme on one side and communal and private areas for residents on the other side. Design of the house is based on a co-living concept, where private and social slide closer and thus offer a new learning experience in social skills and personal growth with the emphasis on forming new relations while still maintaining a sense of privacy and shelter.
The site is situated in suburban area of Ljubljana, caught between Žale, Ljubljana’s central cemetery, Ljubljana bypass and Ljubljana’s biggest commercial area.
The spontaneous growth of otherwise planned suburban area, framed by more short-therm commercial development and contrasted by constancy and tranquility of cementery and nearby park acts as a decisive role in design of the building.
Materials and form follow the directive of clearly stating the uniqueness of the programme while still trying to be incorporated in the suburban tissue
Concept - context and strategy
Context is formed mainly on the programme and its location. It revolves aroud dualities that present themselves:
• protecting and connecting,
• respite and activity,
• institution and home,
• society and family
• communal and private,
• before and after.
Architecture follows these dualities and uses material, form and structure to tell and protect the stories that live inside.
First set of challenges is in the relation of institutional setup of rules for the programme in contrast to everyday needs of mothers, kids and employees using the building. It is addressed with a co-living concept of the Home. Large communal areas in ground floor offer flexibility and a sense of community. Mote withdrawn areas on the higher floors offer more or complete privacy. The administrative part acts as a protective area between the public courtyard and private garden. Clients usual demands of robust, economical construction were almost in direct contrast to users needs of homely and sustainable feel of spaces.
Second set of challenges was in decomposition of suburban fabric with relations between large scale commercial development and small scale residential short term reality contrasted with strong symbolic statement of eternity in nearby cemetery and commanding views of the Alps.
The resulting architecture is defined with delicate interaction of two volumes that differ in materials and with subtle differences generate similar but emotionally quite different ambients.
Construction – Materials and Structure
The materials used in construction are based on the client’s decision on minimal maintenance, relative stability of the program with its specifics and strict fire regulations.
But based on specifics of intended use we limited our use on natural materials.
Wood is used in most instances (wooden railings, wooden roof construction, flooring, ceiling, doors, windows and most of the furniture). Areas with more frequent use have more robust materials (aluminum roof, teraco flooring, concrete kitchen counters, stainless steel railings, steel clad walls as bulletin boards...). The construction is mainly in concrete (bearing walls and floors) and partly wooden (roof construction).
The double ventilated facade embraces the house from two sides, with two materials. Strong but delicately formed concrete on the northern and street side and double glass facade on southern and park side.
Finishes are based on natural states of materials – wood is oiled, the concrete is sanded or polished.
Heating and ventilation are based on energy efficiency. Floor heating and sanitary water is treated with heat pump, supported in colder months with natural gas heater.
Ventilation is minimal and treated with recuperation.
With use of materials we have achieved a detailed character of architecture but still adapted the design to low cost demands of the client.