Pergola House

Formally, a classic gable-roofed house in a quiet residential street north of Potsdamer Chaussee Berlin , Germany . Recently reinterpreted by rundzwei Architekten BDA, the roof surfaces as well as the facades are covered on all four sides by a delicate, light-coloured wooden cladding made of silver fir. With the exception of a few purposefully placed façade openings, the entire structure is surrounded by a homogeneous building envelope. Along the two eaves sides, the roof surfaces are extended beyond the structure as pergolas, thus extending the house into the garden.The shell shapes the building into an architectural unit, emphasising the archetype of the classic single-family house on the one hand and blurring its form on the other. Functionally, the uniform roof and façade skin with its interstices serves as privacy and sun protection – it thus becomes a filter between “inside” and “outside” – and enables a specific external and internal perception of the building.In contrast to the houses in the immediate neighbourhood, the building with its almost square ground plan is relatively close to the street and separated from it only by an approx. six-meter-wide front garden. This position on the plot increases the area for the garden behind the house, which is located on the north side.
The expansive roof surfaces extending from the building on the left above the terrace at the entrance to the house and on the right above the carport and bicycle parking spaces elegantly increase the area of the single-family house that can be used regardless of the weather. Thanks to them, the compact plot is optimally used: The distances required by building law are complied with, although, for example, the carport pergola above the bicycle parking spaces extends to the eastern boundary of the plot.
One enters the house via a narrow terrace along the west side of the house, protected from the weather thanks to the extended roof area above. The entrance area offers thoughtful features such as an elongated bench and discreetly hidden storage space for shoes and wardrobe in a small area – in addition to access to living spaces on the ground floor and first floor, as well as to the study. The basement with wellness area, building services and storage areas is also accessed via the entrance area. On the first floor, the areas for living, dining and cooking are arranged in an L-shape around the compactly concentrated, “serving” functions. At its apex, this horizontal “L” connects the interior with the exterior through large glazed window areas. The patio doors, which open across the corner, extend the house into the garden.
Above the dining area, an air space extends to below the pitched roof and forms a vertical “L” with the open kitchen or living room. This allows for visual relationships between the first floor and the floors above, which are realised as gallery levels. The suspended steel staircase between the upper floors also takes this design idea into account.
The functional zones “living”, “dining” and “cooking” are clearly architecturally defined by the vertical and horizontal “L-principle”: While the living area is pronounced rather intimate, slightly withdrawn, and the cooking area opens to the front garden and street, the “dining room” becomes the communicative heart of the villa.
The clear architectural language of the timber construction villa corresponds with the consistent choice of materials and well thought-out detailing. While the wellness areas in the basement create a contemplative spatial impression with beige-brown natural stone floors and gray mineral plaster walls, the first floor and upper floors shine in the bright white of the walls, ceilings and steel stairs.
Floor and stair coverings, as well as the seating windows or the fixtures in the hallway and kitchen, on the other hand, are made of oak wood left in its natural state. Vertical surfaces of cabinets and drawers are uniformly finished in gray linoleum. For the sanitary areas as well as the swimming pool, roundtwo architects have developed a consistent material composition: Beige-brown mottled travertine on walls and floors contrasts with black steel elements, light switches and fittings.

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