© 2017 Pocket Projects
Designed by studioKALEIDO

KD Architects with FARM

The conversation with the existing shophouse started with the intention to read the ‘new’ not as a ‘rear extension’ but as an ‘insertion’.  We were keen to understand the spatial opportunities with such a configuration while heightening a unique experience inherent within the spatial structure of a shophouse.

The monolithic lap pool on the first storey serves to emphasise the linear typology of the space, as it guides one’s gaze and experience from the front to the rear.  Extending this idea of linearity is the monolithic volume terminating at the rear, housing the private quarters on the upper levels.

One experiences the continuity of space through a series of stairs that loop the length of the shophouse on multi levels, the dialogue between the old and new constantly questioned and revealed through the shift in geometry, height, volume and material.  Central to this continuous loop is the skylight that marks the vital interface, providing not only a functional source of light in this marrow linear space, but more importantly, a visual connection through the parts of the house.

The connection between the conserved shophouse and the new insertion is mediated through a high volume space at the rear or the void, here one sees the charity in geometry of these 2 objects, of the inserted and the existing.  It is also in this critical space where one experiences the essence of the shophouse, not merely in its retention of the façade envelope, but also the integrity of the spatial structure.  Thus, this conscious effort to cross these series of the thresholds enhances one’s appreciation of this insertion while providing a spatially exciting experience through the various sections of the shophouse.