Story at a glance:
- Franta Group has designed a new apartment complex called Villa Reden.
- The apartment complex is designed in an oval shape to account for the acute angles of the area.
- The oval shape of Villa Reden came from the shape of the area and the idea of leaving the tallest possible tree standing on the property.
In the south Polish town of Chorzów you’ll find an unexpected group of apartments. Villa Reden sits on an irregular plot of land, described by architects as difficult for traditional construction projects as it’s next to Park Redena and surrounded by trees and greenery. Here a surprising set of modern apartment buildings blend into the 1920s aesthetics around it.
“The idea and shape of the building resulted directly from the irregular polygonal shape of the area intended for development and the idea of leaving the largest possible tree standing on the plot,” according to the architects at Franta Group, who designed Villa Reden.
“Such a simple inspiration has become the basic guideline for shaping the building. Creating the form step by step, first of all: the solid was formed in accordance with the function of the apartments, optimizing their function into the shape of an irregular polygon.”
Despite first impressions that it’s one coherent apartment building, it’s a complex of four single-family, two-apartment group buildings that can be divided into four individual parts.
“The pleasure of living was the inspiration,” says architect Maciej Franta. “We tried to transfer the feelings associated with the moments associated with holidays, such as a wooden alpine terrace, a hammock in the trees, or a park pavilion in the summer where we have coffee or a drink. We tried to fit all these feelings into the apartment building.”
The idea to make the corner rounded came from the acute angles of the plot’s boundaries. The block itself was dressed in wooden viewing terraces with a patio to illuminate the internal parts of the apartments. The floor of the residential part was raised by one level, leaving the ground floor undeveloped as a space for social interactions of residents.
One challenge was to design Villa Reden in a way that would allow it to blend in with the environment.
“The most difficult thing was to design the building in such a way that it would sit in context and, despite its scale, not dominate its surroundings,” says Franta. “We tried to integrate it with the surroundings and greenery. The idea was to be able to touch the tree trunk while sitting on the terrace.”