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Category: TYPOLOGIES


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Pasadena Heights v3.0

Pasadena Heights v3.0
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The greatest advantage of terraced apartments is that each apartment can have an outdoor space open to the sky. The greatest disadvantage of terraced apartments on level ground, is that the lower apartments become longer and receive less daylight because because that long end is at the bottom of some light-well, or they receive less […]

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Mallville

Mallville
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A December 2020 Yahoo Finance article [thanks Mark!] said that about 30% of US malls were in financial trouble and that those that survive might have their anchor stores demolished and housing constructed instead. Since then I’ve read predictions of as much as 80% are in trouble but that was the first time I’d read […]

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Learning From Shikumen

Learning From Shikumen
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In 2003 I produced a small proposal to fit several two-bedroom houses onto a small site somewhere in Kent, UK. I wanted to design only one house with arbitrary window positions so the houses could be rotated and clustered on the triangular plot. This is it. It could be a row house with windows only […]

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Shikumen (石库门)

Shikumen (石库门)
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Shikumen (stone gate buildings) are a housing type peculiar to Shanghai, and named after the stone gates leading from the street to a hierarchy of orthogonal alleys. The collective unit is called a li-long. As an subject of academic scrutiny, shikumen are well-trodden ground well picked over. Everyone will want to tell you shikumen are […]

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The Space Between Apartments

The Space Between Apartments
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The problem: to arrive at a circular configuration for medium-high rise housing that has 1) the structural efficiency of circular structures such as the Chinese vernacular Han (Hakka) communal house 2) cross ventilation to all apartments enabled by the two or four apartments per landing as in a typical floor of a standard Chinese apartment […]

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The Handshake House

The Handshake House
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Handshake accommodation isn’t something that happens only in China. Many Japanese suburban houses have a boundary setback of only 50cm. Here’s one we know. There’s windows on the side elevations but they’re small and low down so nobody’s going to be actually shaking hands through them. And, still in Japan, here’s one we’ve probably forgotten […]

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The Handshake Apartment

The Handshake Apartment
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If you’ve heard about handshake apartments, they’ll probably be in Shenzhen, China, and in buildings built so close that occupants in neighboring buildings can shake hands from their windows. You can get the idea from these images. They’re intense, but it’s what happens if you want to solve density, access, daylighting and ventilation without recourse […]