“The first big comission on which we spent the first five years of our office’s existence. A complex task that required not only an architectural sense for social housing in the existing structure of the city, but also a technical test, during which we had to deal with several protection zones and difficult engineering. Several studies before us failed to transform the land into any realization, and we are very happy that this plan has become the best test for our beginnings. The project, which has gone through many budget cuts, had to earn for itself with acquired meters of layouts and still has retained great useful elements such as large windows with lowered parapets, large usable balconies, terraces, gardens and private areas. This, despite the small amount of detail, makes it our first major co-authored work.”
The urbanism of the new development is based on the framework of the established regulations (percentage of the built-up area, take-off curves of the helicopter of the adjacent hospital and the nearby single track of the Czech Railways) and continuity with the urbanism of neighboring apartment buildings. On the north side of the land there are three apartment buildings with a square layout with corners pointing to the four cardinal directions. The house on the west side of the land is one story lower due to a collision with the hospital’s helipad takeoff curve. On the south side of the land there is a parking lot and a large single-storey parking structure, which serves partly as an acoustic barrier for the railway track. A two-lane access road leads from the original development on the north-eastern side, thanks to which a wide pedestrian zone is created between the parking garage and the apartment buildings. This forms a private corridor that also serves as an access road for fire engines and waste collection. The two-lane road, together with perpendicular parking, connected to the outdoor parking lot, runs under the parking garage on the south side and, together with the vegetation wall, further helps to reduce the noise of the railway track.
The construction of apartment buildings is divided into two stages. During the first stage, three apartment buildings were created on the northeast side of the property, a garage building, a parking lot and all roads. In the second phase, a modular double apartment building will be created on the southwest side. The front gardens of the apartment buildings are lined with a series of planted birch trees along with a free planting of yews and hornbeams.
The simple morphology of the four- and five-story house (top floor reduced, containing a terrace) with a square floor plan follows the original high-quality socialist construction, both in terms of the material expression of the house and the detailed elements. The object of the apartment building connects a centrally located communication core, including an elevator shaft and a U-shaped staircase connecting the landings to a skylight, which will allow natural lighting of the vertical communication. The core is connected to the exterior by a leeward entrance, an entrance with mailboxes, an adjoining storage room and a space for dustbins, which also has a separate access for garbage collection. This grouping of facilities occupies the equivalent of one apartment unit from the otherwise regularly recurring number of flats on the higher floors. The first floor therefore has five apartments with access to gardens of the same size. On the upper floors, the system of six apartments is repeated, four of which have access to a large, two meters deep balcony. On the last, reduced floor, there are two large apartments with access to the terrace, which copies the shape of the balconies on the lower floors and thus creates large, well-usable spaces for residents. The parking facility is a one-story building in the shape corresponding to the arrangement of perpendicular parking. Part of the modules is used for separate garage parking, while the remaining part is occupied by cubicles serving the residents of apartment buildings. All new buildings are finished with a vegetated roof.
The expression of the building is derived from a simple modular system. The square windows in the size of two by two meters, equipped with a lowered window sill of a height of sixty centimeters, are regularly replaced by a meter-wide column between the windows. This grid is disturbed only by a wide modular window with access to the balcony or garden. The window frames, lowered parapet railings, safety shutters, balcony railings and aluminum entrance doors are all finished in white. An important element is the material differentiation of the ground floor and the last, reduced floor. These are made of smoothed plaster separating the parterre and the raised floor of the house from the rest of the facade, which is made of rough plaster. This differentiation is historically a more suitable solution for the more modest Czech regions than the use of imported facing stones. The interior solution corresponds to the exterior one, and smooth plaster is used in the common areas. The floors of common areas, corridors, treads of stairs and landings are made of light gray ceramic. The floor is connected by a plinth made of the same material. Lockers, stair railings and other interior details related to common areas will also be done in white. The doors to the apartments are made in white, which is disturbed only by the protective metal sheet in a stainless shade.
The facade of the parking garage was made in white smooth plaster, and the entrance door to the parking garage is equipped with a practical leeward.
The sidewalks are made of simple concrete paving laid regularly. In terms of material, it will thus differ from an asphalt cycling path. Roads and parking spaces for people with reduced mobility will be made of asphalt surfaces. Most of the parking spaces will be made as areas of grass blocks.