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Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.

Housing at the old city wall of Berlin in Berlin Mitte, Germany by Sohrab Zafari

 
July 20th, 2014 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: Sohrab Zafari

This house has been created. It tries to be understood primarily as a complex spatial structure and as a cultural fusion building, as a labyrinth of light, as a new, fresh wind that brushes gently over this place.

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

  • Architects: Sohrab Zafari
  • Project: Housing at the old city wall of Berlin
  • Location: Berlin Mitte, Germany
  • Photography: Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar
  • Year: 2014

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

That greets, enriches and brings the new. That turns disadvantages into advantages. Atypical but nevertheless revitalizing and integrating.

Here in Berlin Mitte, in Waisenstrasse opposite the old city walls , where a few isolated medieval structures are still to be found, was the 520 square meter plot . Its development potential and light situation proved to be a particular challenge, not only because of the complicated plot geometry but also the six -to seven- story tall buildings that border it.

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Additional challenges were given by building code requirements, the perceptions of the Landesdenkmalamt (landmark building commission) as well as the desire of the owner and investor for maximum utilization of space with high architectural and spatial quality .

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

How can the density and individuality, security, and naturally grown fragmentation of the medieval structure with courtyards and alleys, as they once were, be transformed into a different , contemporary language ?

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

At this place, where time left so many scars, shouldn’t there be a house that’s been developed not only to fill voids but also to leave voids?
How can I, as a German architect with Persian roots, make a meaningful contribution?

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

How can you find architecture that is on one hand connected to the place, on the other hand, divorced from it? Which is foreign, yet familiar? Which can make you experience the place, but also look beyond it? – Into the world and into the future of a cosmopolitan city.

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

The result is an individually from the inside out developed building complex with a mountain village like structure whose parts individually stretch to the light, for air and into the space, yet withdraw into hidden privacy.
The interaction of introversion and extroversion, looking in and looking out, interior and exterior spaces, light and shadow play, create their own complex cosmos.

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

The construction leaves interstitial space and places that offer retreat and relaxation to the over stimulated big city life, as well as shelter or a meeting room, if you like.

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

The house lives with the light and changes due to the light at any given day time or season.
It is constructed with light in mind and that is always noticeable.
The white, fine-grained and seamlessly plastered walls (ETICS) abandon the boundaries between interior and exterior spaces and let the individual buildings seem basic, abstract and sculptural by the way of the sharp edges of the building corners (waterproof Sto boards as a cover).

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

They reinforce the effect of light and provide an ideal reflective surface.
Patios and terraces, pool and water surfaces change at any time of day or season specific areas of the house and thereby contribute significantly to the increase in living quality . This will not only allow joy and fun but also strengthen the awareness and the senses.

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

The six-storey front building houses a parking garage in the basement, above five apartments two of which are organized as maisonettes . Two townhouses, five and three floors , designed as independent vertical units additionally accessed via a courtyard on the 1st floor. All apartments have been designed and customized individually. They differ fundamentally from each other yet form a unity.

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Christian Dammert, Aviel Avdar

Image Courtesy © Sohrab Zafari

Image Courtesy © Sohrab Zafari

Image Courtesy © Sohrab Zafari

Image Courtesy © Sohrab Zafari

Image Courtesy © Sohrab Zafari

Image Courtesy © Sohrab Zafari

Image Courtesy © Sohrab Zafari

Image Courtesy © Sohrab Zafari

Image Courtesy © Sohrab Zafari

Image Courtesy © Sohrab Zafari

Image Courtesy © Sohrab Zafari

Image Courtesy © Sohrab Zafari

Image Courtesy © Sohrab Zafari

Image Courtesy © Sohrab Zafari

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Category: House

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