HOLX4

Residential building Athens / Greece / 2011

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The site is located on a hill in the Athenian suburb of Holargos. The building is typically known in Greek as "polykatoikia", meaning a multi-storied residential building. In this case the design recontextualizes the expression of a multi-unit housing building and its relationship with its natural surroundings.


The area is a combination of suburban tranquillity together with easy access to the city centre of Athens. Holargos comes with the advantage of lying at the foot of Mount Ymittos, which forms the natural eastern boundary of Athens. Here, the dense city grid suddenly gives way to a green slope dotted with trees, unbuilt areas and parks for sporting facilities/activities. This means that the area has direct access to nature and an overall better quality of life compared to the densely populated urban fabric of much of Athens. The design seeks to incorporate as much of the above as possible into the everyday life of the inhabitants.


The desire to open up the interior towards the surroundings and the inclination of the plot have been key elements in the design approach. They define the interior circulation and drive the form of the exterior of the building. Each apartment is split into two distinct parts connected with each other through an open part that invites nature to "inhabit" the interior. Therefore the main body of the building consists of three volumes that translate into three domestic areas. The first -including kitchen and living room/common use zone- connects to the third space -comprising bedrooms/private zone-through a stepped bridge. The connecting element sits within the timber-cladded volume, which serves to open the interior towards the adjacent park.


The bioclimatic performance and energy output of the building have been of particular concern and driven the use of natural light and ventilation for all spaces. The material palette features an external wall insulation system in dark grey and white. This strategic choice significantly reduces energy loss by wrapping the building in a thermally resistant envelope, simultaneously maximising internal space and helping to maintain comfortable interior temperatures all year round. The timber cladding is key to the morphology and materiality of the project. The garden surrounding the pilotis allows for a smooth transition from public into private space.

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    The site is located on a hill in the Athenian suburb of Holargos. The building is typically known in Greek as "polykatoikia", meaning a multi-storied residential building. In this case the design recontextualizes the expression of a multi-unit housing building and its relationship with its natural surroundings. The area is a combination of suburban tranquillity together with easy access to the city centre of Athens. Holargos comes with the advantage of lying at the foot of Mount Ymittos, which...

    Project details
    • Year 2011
    • Work started in 2009
    • Work finished in 2011
    • Main structure Reinforced concrete
    • Client Trigkas Constructions
    • Status Completed works
    • Type Apartments / Multi-family residence
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