Old & New House / Object Architects
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Manufacturer : A MARK, FLOS
Text description of the architects. In the middle of the Flemish fields we started work on an existing family home and adjoining stables. Together with the owners and their recently retired parents we have converted the existing farmhouse into two apartments, one of which is a nursing home to continue living in for life. With this renovation we have tried to disturb the typical Flemish rural character of the area as little as possible.
The shape and continuity of the existing roofs have been preserved, along with almost all of the exterior walls of the original structures. The existing residential building was converted into a nursing home. A new structure has been placed within the confines of the adjacent barns to house the living quarters of the foster family. This ensures enough privacy for both families without compromising the outdoor space and views.
The focal point of the new volume is the entrance hall, which acts as a hub connecting the other rooms. Although the residents of the nursing home have a separate entrance, there is an internal connection between the two residential units via the covered outdoor space. The existing nursing home’s sloping roof was extended to be perpendicular to the new structure, which was conceived as a concrete beam supported by diamond-shaped columns. The space under the roof houses various sleeping quarters, a bathroom and several spacious storage rooms.
A direct connection to the nursing home was also created so that residents can quickly access the bedroom on the ground floor in an emergency. On the other hand, the roof rests on the original outer wall, which ensures that the new residents can enjoy a covered outdoor area in bad weather or high temperatures. The bedrooms are connected by a long night hall. Several skylights of different sizes provide sufficient light. Custom furniture on one side alternates storage space with lower benches where residents can retreat to read a book.
The external appearance of the existing house and barn was left unchanged. The classic baking and roof tiles ensure that the farm retains its authentic character. The new building, most of which has large windows, was given a bronze-colored aluminum surface. Structural concrete elements and brown-red floor tiles provide the necessary contrast without disturbing the whole. The brutal and raw character of the old elements reinforces the filigree and clean look of the new living unit.
For the new building, the choice fell on an easy-care, polished concrete floor. A contrasting sandblasted oak herringbone parquet floor was chosen for the seating area, which houses the lounge and play area. In the center of the house we find a royal blue core that houses a toilet, cloakroom and staircase on one side and is part of the kitchen and storage room on the other. The rounded kitchen island in a natural wood tone has a peach colored countertop.
Along with the brass accents, these give the whole a contemporary, luxurious look. With this renovation we have attempted to transform an existing home into a care home where the original occupants would feel at home and live for a lifetime, while still providing customers with modern comfort and privacy