Squeezed onto an angular plot among a street and a modest irrigation channel, this property near the Belgian village of Knokke comprises a timber-clad ground floor with a glass box resting on prime (+ slideshow).
House Graafjansdijk was designed by Bruges workplace Govaert & Vanhoutte, whose previous projects include a minimal concrete and glass cemetery pavilion and a factory with walls of concrete, metal mesh and glass.
It provides a house for the owner of a local estate agents.
The property will take its title from a dike built in the ninth century to safeguard regions of France and Belgium from North Sea storm surges.
The only remaining part of the Graaf Jansdijk is now a road that extends east from Knokke along one particular side of the web site, which is bordered on its opposite edge by a narrow ditch.
Govaert & Vanhoutte was asked to produce a modern four-bedroom family property on this narrow plot, generating the most of views in direction of the farmland on either side while offering privacy from the adjacent road.
A single-storey volume containing the bedrooms occupies the entirety of the site at street degree.
Its frontage is clad in fence-like timber boards that form an impervious surface, although the elevation seeking onto the fields is mainly glazed.
“A first choice we made was to integrate all night functions on ground level, closed in the direction of the street and open in direction of the corn area,” architect Michael Lammens advised Dezeen.
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“This creates a really intimate character. The only way to do this was to practically fully occupy the terrain on the first degree.”
Weatherbeaten wooden cladding wraps about a garage positioned at the narrower finish of the plot. On the side bounded by the water, the bedrooms lengthen about the edges of a modest inner backyard.
Stairs lead from an entrance set back slightly from the street to a transparent volume containing the kitchen and residing area. This smaller sized upper storey is raised over the degree of the dike to supply views across the fields on both side.
“In this way a powerful horizontal plinth carries a glass lookout,” Lammens additional. “This horizontal character was critical, integrating the property in its residential setting.”
The timber cladding extends 1 metre past the ceiling height of the ground floor to type a railing about a huge decked roof terrace.
A total-height sliding glass door connects the dining area with this terrace, which is lined on its opposite edge by a glass balustrade that guarantees an uninterrupted view across the corn field.
The material palette used for the building’s exterior is continued internally, with the same weathered timber boards utilized to walls on each ranges.
Black tadelakt plaster flooring gives a tactile surface that is complemented by the raw metal used for the kitchen countertop and dining table.
White lime paint applied to the remaining walls and ceilings gives these surfaces a softer matt finish.
Photography is by Tim Van de Velde.
Site prepare – click for more substantial image Basement floor strategy – click for bigger image Ground floor plan – click for more substantial picture First floor strategy – click for bigger picture Cross area – click for larger picture Extended section – click for greater image