GROUNDS is a coffee hub in Prague's developing area of Karlín. Tucked inside an inner yard of a vibrant office and residential street, the hub works as a neighborhood cafe where coffee is being served straight from its own roastery. In order to cut the costs but also learn how the architecture and spaces relate to their production processes, the construction was made hands-on and designed-by-building together with the coffee community running the place. Taking advantage of the overhead natural light, a translucent duplex object allows light through to the various functions of the hub, all integrated and connected within the unit. The further spaces from the entrance are dedicated to the in-house coffee production: from the storing of the raw beans to the roasting, cleaning, and packaging processes. The built-in inner room is made for the coffee testing, functioning both as the showroom of the professional barista machines and where educational workshops and competitions are taking place. The object’s front side towards the entrance is dedicated to the cafeteria and the sale of the coffee to the final users. Towards the sidewall, a suspended tangerine-colored metal staircase leads to the upper working space, enveloped by an organically shaped corrugated plastic wall. The organically designed plan allows nooks in which a variety of plants are growing and working as a source of natural air purifiers, dust collectors, and helping to keep a balance in the levels of humidity needed for the coffee processes.
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