Project

Natascha Meuser - (FB3)

Private Shelters - Iconic and Generic Villas on a Hillside

  • Mehmet Caferoglu "V-Shaped Villa - With Extensive City Views"
    Mehmet Caferoglu "V-Shaped Villa - With Extensive City Views" © Mehmet Caferoglu
  • Mehmet Caferoglu "V-Shaped Villa - With Extensive City Views"
    Mehmet Caferoglu "V-Shaped Villa - With Extensive City Views" © Mehmet Caferoglu
  • V-shaped Villa - with extensive city views
    Mehmet Caferoglu "V-Shaped Villa - With Extensive City Views" © Mehmet Caferoglu
  • Mehmet Caferoglu "V-Shaped Villa - With Extensive City Views"
    Mehmet Caferoglu "V-Shaped Villa - With Extensive City Views" © Mehmet Caferoglu
  • Mehmet Caferoglu "V-Shaped Villa - With Extensive City Views"
    Mehmet Caferoglu "V-Shaped Villa - With Extensive City Views" © Mehmet Caferoglu
  • Pixel House - how extruded concrete - volumes forms a hillside
    Jasvinder Singh "Pixel House" © Jasvinder Singh
  • Pixel House - how extruded concrete - volumes forms a hillside
    Jasvinder Singh "Pixel House" © Jasvinder Singh
  • Surabhi Nigam "The Three Puncture - A Bar with Vision"
    Surabhi Nigam "The Three Puncture - A Bar with Vision" © Surabhi Nigam
  • Surabhi Nigam "The Three Puncture - A Bar with Vision"
    Surabhi Nigam "The Three Puncture - A Bar with Vision" © Surabhi Nigam
  • Surabhi Nigam "The Three Puncture - A Bar with Vision"
    Surabhi Nigam "The Three Puncture - A Bar with Vision" © Surabhi Nigam

During the COVID-19 pandemic people have been forced to retreat into private shelters which have tested the limits and boundaries of residential typologies. The villa has re-emerged as an object of desire from an ambition to escape the restriction of one’s own four walls. Throughout history the villa as an architectural typology has been rethought and reinvented by a number of great architects who sought to break radically with the tradition of their time. They are still praised within the architectural canon, which is why many seek to emulate their success in the form of their own homes. The villa is both a dream for clients to live in and a vehicle for architects to express themselves. It combines the most primitive function of architecture – to create a liveable shelter – with abundant material resources, and in it, architects can manifest their far-ranging ideologies within the framework of a single building. This book introduces the concepts underlying the identity of the villa and features ten of the most noteworthy examples.

In our stance towards architecture we demonstrate our response to the most fundamental questions of human civilisation. During a time of isolation, the self-evident becomes a daily necessity. In the process, one question is posed time and again from generation to generation: ’How do we want to live?’. The oldest building typology remains that of the detached house. Hans Wolfgang Hoffmann, a recognised architectural critic was part of the online project. He offers an overview of the 3,000-year history of villas and country houses by drawing upon floor plans and examining how architects have approached this task since ancient times.

For our students the brief was simple - design a villa. Who would have thought that a global pandemic would force the entire world to rethink their daily way of living? How should we as architects and students react to the new challenges facing us in and out of the classroom? It may well have been the subconscious escapism of students forced into isolation and quarantine which provided such a strong incentive for them to take part in this course. This unusual semester project involved not only the theoretical aspects of the typology of the villa but also online interaction with real clients, an existing site and an unprecedented number of challenges. The students were scattered across the five continents of the world and so situated in different time zones.

The typology of the villa therefore shifted from a fundamental of architectural education into a vehicle of discussion around those contemporary issues we face today. This book attempts to present the struggles and rethinking involved in conducting an architectural course – in collaboration with the client – that is not only grounded in reality but overcomes those challenges associated with disruption of time and space together with the repercussions posed by a global pandemic.

Project Design Brief
Following research and discussions, students begin to build an understanding of the spatial requirements of the project so they can carry out particular tasks and assess the spatial requirements in the site and context. The programme checklist (five planning parameters) helps the students to develop the project and identify areas of importance and those that need to be clarified, and to explore the:

Site: location, access, reasons for choosing, health and safety aspects, key elements or features;
Building: size, use, form, scale, hierarchy;
Narrative: coherent design, which corresponds to the user requirements;
Programme: areas, specialist items;
Zoning and Size: dimensional considerations such as boundaries, access, future expansions;
Landscape: natural features of the site such as trees, rocks, topography, ponds;
Circulation: movement and circulation through and around the building and site;
Climate: sun and shadow;
Views: Panorama and perspectives.

Design Project Framework
Upon completion of this online course, students will have developed the following skills:
• Use scientific research to design buildings
• Explain building history of villa architecture
• Determin fundamental architectural principles to meet the needs of the client
• Define planning parameters and quality standards for single-family houses
• Work interdisciplinarily with parties involved in construction and planning
• Define a brief through discussions with the client
• Carry out an thorough site analysis, gaining as much information as possible about the site, surroundings, and context
• Develop ideas that will provide a basis for their concept

Space Requirements - Project Design Brief
Site area: 2,050 sqm
Total floor space: 450 to 500 sqm (without garage)
Levels: 3 levels
(1 – Parking / 2 – Ground floor / 3 – Second floor)
Basement: not necessary
Parking: underground car park (4 to 5 cars)
Roof: flat
Extras: Outdoor pool with shower and jacuzzi (close to house), Fireplace (Living area), Barrier-free
Ceiling height: min. 3.50 m

Required space

  • Ground floor Entrance with guest toilet and wardrobe
  • Office
  • Gym
  • 2 children’s rooms with bathroom (+14 years)
  • 1 guest room (could be children’s room)
  • Laundry room
  • Technical room
  • Storage room
  • Elevator
  • First floor Entrance with guest toilet and wardrobe
  • Living room
  • Kitchen/Dining
  • Housekeeping area
  • Master bedroom
  • Master bath with sauna
  • Dressing room
  • 2 children rooms with bath (+5 years)
  • Terraces

>> Project Brochure [PDF]