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Half House / Projekt V Arhitektura

Half House / Projekt V Arhitektura

© Projekt V Arhitektura© Projekt V Arhitektura© Projekt V Arhitektura© Projekt V Arhitektura+ 19

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© Projekt V Arhitektura
© Projekt V Arhitektura

Text description provided by the architects. Situated in an ordinary unplanned neighbourhood in Sarajevo, the Half House is a new studio extension and refurbishment of the ground floor of a typical Bosnian ‘family house’. The Half House has been designed for a wheelchair user and his wife by Projekt V Arhitektura. The studio extension is a new typology for the area: it is in between a detached studio house, a family gathering space, and a ‘weekend’ countryside house common to the region.

© Projekt V Arhitektura
© Projekt V Arhitektura
Ground Floor Plan - Proposed
Ground Floor Plan - Proposed
© Projekt V Arhitektura
© Projekt V Arhitektura

The existing house and ground floor apartment was built in the1980s and has been reconfigured through decades of ‘ad-hoc’ interventions and extensions following the war in the 90s. Resulting in limited, constrained space for living, moving around in a wheelchair, and hosting a large family. The Half House responds to the disjointed, post-war character of the surrounding neighbourhood and existing family house, with a simple, elemental, minimalistic architecture that brings an order to its setting. 

© Projekt V Arhitektura
© Projekt V Arhitektura

This first completed phase includes the interior of a new side extension that can act as a semi-detached studio. Designed to accommodate a carer in the couple’s later life, it incorporates a large open-plan dining and living area; covered terrace with barbecue; a WC with walk-in shower; and an upper mezzanine. The form of the studio extension is a single pitched roof, held up by two long flank walls that create a long open-plan central space that gives a sense of generosity.  Glazed pocket sliding doors extend the living area and create the feeling of a large outdoor covered space.

© Projekt V Arhitektura
© Projekt V Arhitektura

A key architectural feature of the design is the floor-to-ceiling, built-in joinery walls that span the full length of the dining, living and outdoor areas. The walls are treated like a façade, with carved out voids to accommodate windows, passage-ways, seating, book shelving, storage cupboards, and a space for a future lift to the mezzanine. They transform in use. Opening in-built cupboards, windows and doors, changing the sofa to a bed, or lighting a fire in the stove, are everyday actions that bring the walls to life and give the space a sense of dynamism. 

© Projekt V Arhitektura
© Projekt V Arhitektura

The interior oak walls introduce nature into the space, drawing on the forests of Bosnia. The walls reference key timber elements of a traditional Bosnian townhouse: a ‘Musandera’, a deep line of built-in cupboards that are typically located along the length of the wall that one walks through when entering a room. The upper gallery also references the wooden veranda’s ‘Divanhana’ and ‘Kemarija’—transitional spaces between inside and outside located on the upper floors.

© Projekt V Arhitektura
© Projekt V Arhitektura
Section A - Cross Section
Section A - Cross Section
© Projekt V Arhitektura
© Projekt V Arhitektura

The mezzanine level, with in-built book shelving, is a peaceful space separated from the remainder of the house.
The second phase of the project started on site in early 2021 and includes a full interior refurbishment of the original apartment and a new facade. Projekt V Arhitektura are a young Architecture and Research studio based in Sarajevo and London.

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About this office
Cite: "Half House / Projekt V Arhitektura" 08 Feb 2021. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/956633/half-house-projekt-v-arhitektura> ISSN 0719-8884

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