As time is short we’ve decided to stick with the Temporary/Permanent concept. We think this is particularly relevant for this building typology as it allows us to develop an architecture that carries tension and ambiguity, providing comfort and stability from which individuality can grow.
We concluded that a courtyard organisation fits the concept and site requirements well. The communal facilities are located at the north of the site, adjoining the neighbouring houses while the residential modules flank the other 3 sides of the courtyard.
The courtyard will be the centre of the scheme, pulling together the different parts of the program and providing a clear point of orientation from which community and individual events branch out.
The specific details and materiality of the project is still open, however, for the temporary halves of the residential modules we’re fairly certain that we’ll use the Walter Segal approach. This means that the temporary part of the design will be made from timber in an easy to construct manner, allowing residents to build their own living spaces to add to the permanent structure. As co-housing projects have demonstrated, this leads to residents having a far greater sense of ownership over their community.
We are still unsure whether to continue the use of timber throughout the entire building or whether to more explicitly differentiate the temporary from the permanent by using a contrasting material. The forerunner in this instance is brick, primarily thanks to its use int he surrounding residential buildings. We see brick as giving a stronger impression of permanence while also being able to retain a sense of domesticity.
We shall now be looking into timber and timber/brick construction details and precedents. We need to design a range of details for the different parts of the building. In particular we need the central courtyard space to simultaneously exude a sense of permanence, authority, stability and domesticity.
We’ll move to work at scale and in three dimensions now. Between plans, sections, elevations, perspective sketches and models we can start to explore and develop spaces with more precision and control.