Project Description

Houses at Jalan Berjaya, Singapore

The characteristics of the site influenced the concept of the houses, which was based around the resolution of 3 issues: The irregularity of the site, the limited access and frontage of each house from the road and the attractive views towards the rear and side properties.

In response to the site conditions, the traditional typology of semi-detached housing gave way to a highly contextual design response. While the 2 houses share a party wall, this wall does not appear to show itself in the exterior facades. The asymmetrical composition of the units departs from the mirrored-twin imagery often associated with semi-detached housing. Architectural elements from one parcel slide into the other, completely blurring the boundary that separates the houses.

As one moves throughout each of the houses, there is a sense of experiential variation from space to space.  Moving about the dwellings, well-lit spaces are juxtaposed against shaded areas. Intimate spaces open up into expansive volumes. Lateral spaces are choreographed next to high vertical volumes. Foreground details give way to scenic views beyond. A built-in sequence of crafted spaces gives rise to ever-changing experiences and focal points. Tying them together is a restrained palette of colours and details, and most importantly the calming effects of natural light, fresh air and simple, uncluttered spaces.

An assertively modern architectural language, composed with a simple set of formal components and spatial strategies is used in conjunction with daylight and natural ventilation to express architecture at its most basic.

Here, brick, concrete and plaster have been embraced for their versatility, textural richness and solidity. Conventional outlook and spatial organization of dwellings had been reviewed and challenged. Void of the cosmetic use of expensive materials, spatial interest and the appreciation of natural light and ventilation take centre-stage in the architectural design.

We brought in as much daylight as possible to this pair of houses that share a common party wall. Lofty, skylit atrium spaces form attractive indoor features, providing much needed lighting to the centre of these dwellings. There is a quietness in the way the interior architecture was choreographed, and the interior elements were respectfully assembled to form pristine, tranquil and restful dwelling spaces.