Housing Zigzag

  • contemporary architecture

In Rostov-on-Don, the architectural studio A.Asadov Architectural Studio is designing a new residential compound.


The new five-house compound is going to be built in the vicinity of the city airport and in the middle of a large park this is why the main building challenge, along with the housing density, was taking care that each one of the five buildings should overlook the green area. The houses are arranged into two lines however, thanks to their zigzagged shape, they look as if they were placed in a staggered order, while the space between them looks very much like a labyrinth. And a very green labyrinth too the architects took special care to keep most of the green planting intact in order to make the inner courtyards feel comfortable, and at the same time enhance the interpenetration of the residential compound and the green area. Making the courtyards so generously green and pedestrian-only, as well as filling them with playgrounds and sports areas was possible thanks to the width of the residential buildings chosen by the architects the houses are only 15.2 meters wide, which helps to provide isolation for every flat (them being double-side oriented) and build the minimum number of fire lanes. At the same time, the parking lots are conveniently placed along the outer perimeter of the land site and along the existing streets. The shifting principle applies to the overall architectural solution of the compound: the three central floors of each of the ten-storey houses are inserted into their overall volumes at a different angle. This central section is also highlighted by a different color:it is coated with dark bricks if the house is light-colored, and, conversely, with light bricks if the overall façade is dark-colored. The consoles that form as a result of this shift are painted orange or light green (these same bright colors are there in the decoration of the entrance areas and the bays of the evacuation stairs), while the emerging fragments of the roofs of the lower sections are used for green houses. The dynamic architectural image is enhanced by the gables that are meant to echo the gabled roof, as well as by the diversity of the brick laying pattern in some cases the bricks are deliberately hidden and coated in the stucco-like way, in some cases they are turned at a 45-degree angle to one another, and in some cases - laid in a staggered order. By means of using these textural inserts, the architects enhance the window apertures, alternating the vertical and horizontal partitions.
Text by: Alexander Asadov, Andrey Asadov, Anna Martovitskaya
Translated by Anton Mizonov

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