This unusual project is part of Pieter Peerlings & Silvia Mertens' sculp(IT), Belgian architects thirsty for innovation. In an exiguous 240m2 area, they could conceive a spectacular mix of house-and-studio in the midst of Antwerp, the second biggest city of Belgium. Over an iron foundation, four wooden pavements were laid, creating floors of 60 m2/each. The main idea was: a floor where you could work, have some rest, have a meal and take a sleep. And don't forget of an open-air cover with a bathtub, where you can appreciate the landscape of the region. Talking about the region, the architects also took a particularity of the neighborhood, the ancient "brothel display windows". But, instead of showing almost-naked models, they are only huge glass windows which stand for natural illumination during the day and an amazing scenery during the night.
The interesting aspect of this project is the improvement possibilities of areas no-one could even imagine some kind of construction, not to mention quickness and low prices. Although the hard planning level, in three weeks only the metal structure was fixed between two buildings. Each floor was put one by one, as the hydraulics, electric and heating parts. After the ending, a huge spiral staircase was fixed, linking it all.
All the furniture and the equipments had to be foreseen and arranged because of the limitations of the area, but they proved to be perfectly viable and the final result is amazing. The building, which appeared in a place that could be an inhospitable alley, is modern, clean, simple and highly stylish.
Luc Roymans' Photographs
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