The “V” House | Radical Architecture Design Consultants
The Client’s desire was to have a luxurious home with contemporary design. A home of 7 Family members of three generations. The site is north facing and is located in a Residential Neighborhood. It is a corner Plot with 30 feet wide and 60 feet long on the North and West sides. The Client’s expectation was that Pondicherry being a French city of prominent French heritage buildings, his residence should strike a contrast to its heritage mimicked surroundings.
The “V” House is totally a 3 floored structure with requirements being split in Basement, Ground and First floor. Residence that is blended with many different spatial experiences in a small site. The bedroom for the elderly generations and the lobby for them are organized at the Basement floor. The Kitchen, the Dining, the Family entrance lobby and the Living room has an open-plan arrangement.This makes the interior spaces blend into each other seamlessly.
The column-free and the partition-free interiors enhances the flow of the Kota stone flooring for the entire floor plate. The transparent nature of the spaces in the ground floor allows unobstructed visual connections across its large floor plate and even the uninterrupted diagonal views .We have planned the circulation inside the Home through varied volumes scaling Double-Height and Triple-Height spans.The House blurs the threshold between exteriors and interiors.
The House has two entrances. The entrance in the basement floor is for the elderly parents to their bedrooms and their exclusive lobby to meet their personalized visitors. The other entrance on the ground floor is at the west side for the other users of the Home and their visitors. A water-body is introduced into the lobby in the basement to add to the sense of tranquility and peace to the space.
The entry to the home is announced by a 25 feet x 25 feet cantilevered and intermediate barrier- free slab supported by two “V” Shaped columns only. The 12 feet high Car-Portico with Uninterrupted span gives a grand feel of entrance. This in-turn with the huge cantilevered mass of Ground and First floor aided the look and feel of the building to appear larger.
The staircase from basement to ground floor is made of mild steel. The staircase is deigned to be not space-consuming and not visually heavy. Only the superficial layer of the mild-steel is allowed to naturally rust to considerable shade and rust-arresting sealers are applied to avoid further rust. The rusted staircase with patterned slit window in the background and the walnut wooden flooring in the foreground accentuates the Rustic Architecture milieu of the space.
The other two staircases are made of Slim and zero-heavy ferro-cement concrete. The mix of Extra clear tempered-glass and the frosted- tempered glass balustrades are provided to enhance the barrier-free visual connectivity in the interiors. A minimal handrail made of teak wood is fixed on the glass balustrades.
The client desired for a black themed and an open kitchen. So we designed an Island kitchen with an island counter with cooking-range and this counter acts as a breakfast counter also. The kitchen counters and wall are cladded with imported “Black Marquina” Italian marble. It’s a custom designed modular kitchen according to the client’s needs and desires.
Bridge and the Central-court space:
The bridge connects the three bedrooms in the first floor. It also forms a casual space. This connecting bridge gives a dynamic aesthetics to the double height lobby. The bridge being wrapped with “Black galaxy granite” and “Gray painted” surfaces possesses a striking presence in the Soul-space of the home which is the double height entrance lobby. The bridge is placed in-between the cut-out and the staircase like an “Axis” and dissects the core of the home asymmetrically. The chandelier in the central court with the natural light bleeding inside with louvered shadows compliments the poised Asymmetrical harmony.
The overall material palette is limited to natural kota-stone, black galaxy granite, engineered wood and teak wood for flooring’s along with exposed cement concrete finish and simple white painted wall surfaces. Teak-wood vertical louvers outside the fixed windows serves as an adornment for the building façade and also acts as a security and shading device.
The windows are made of UPVC American-walnut finish., The patio being a spill-over space of the master-bedroom or being a stand-alone deck is controlled by this authentic wooden sliding system.
The dominant exterior color palette of the house is white with hues of gray that strikes a contrast to its colorful surroundings. The exposed cement concrete finish is counterpoised by the white plastered minimal rectilinear forms. Glasses, exposed cement concrete finish, white and gray painted mass, American walnut shaded joineries form the minimal exterior palette.
This project took a major part of our time studying the following aspects like Natural lights and its behavioral patterns in interior spaces; “Joint family culture and heritage” yet with a contemporized twist in a well-known Heritage town of Pondicherry; “Building BIG” in a considerable small-plot ; Training the local-based workmanship for techniques like ferro-cement construction, zero-weight steel fabrication, exposed cement concrete finishing and also about unobstructed visual connectivity between multi-volumes interior spaces.
Project Name: The “V” House
Clients: Aarav Kumar
Architecture Firm: Radical Architecture Design Consultants
Firm Location: Bangalore, India
Completion Year: 2019
Gross Built Area: 4800 Sq.Ft
Project location: Pondicherry
Lead Architects: Janani Manivel, Manivel Rajan
Photo credits:Studio Zero 7