best architects 19
Renens / Switzerland
The particularly constraining status of the parcel generates the shape of the building, a right triangle with two truncated corners. Within the outer matrix, the interior layout evokes the «fractal» by giving the rooms an orthogonal geometry. When these two figures meet, they create an interstitial counter-form that accommodates the day spaces (entrance, kitchen, dining room, living room, office) and organizes them in a row through effects of pinching and dilation. In order to maximize the rental area on a small parcel, the stairs are located on the façade. This extraction of the circulation zones to the outside of the built volume allows the optimisation of the apartments’ typology by grouping the service areas (elevator, bathrooms, kitchen) around a minimal central core. On the façade, the staggered arrangement of the balconies guarantees the integration of the three flights of stairs while reinforcing the building’s collective identity and promoting residents’ interactions.
The building responds to its context by reinterpreting many elements borrowed from the 19th-century architectural repertoire as expressed in the neighbouring buildings: load-bearing façade, mansard roof, French windows, accentuated window frames, projecting balconies, balustrades.