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A Striking Extension That Creatively Enhances an Existing Residence in Chandigarh

Updated: Jan 18, 2020

Residence 2105 by Studio Mohenjodaro:

Reminiscent of an older, simpler era, yet contemporary in spirit. Residence 2105 is essentially an extension to an existing house. Initially designed keeping in mind a family of four, with time, as the family grew, it was inevitable to expand the space in order to accommodate two more bedrooms.

Picture courtesy: Studio Mohenjodaro

The new construction was visualized as part of the first floor of the residence, which ultimately was designed to include a living, dining and kitchen space, turning the first-floor space into a comfortable and warm abode. The clients wanted to retain the old structure, being familiar and comfortable with the way they interacted with the functional spaces daily. And though the decision made economical sense, it also turned out to be the main challenge. The decision implied the front façade could not be changed dramatically to accommodate the new interiors.

Picture courtesy: Studio Mohenjodaro

The existing facade housed multiple geometrical elements including unsymmetrical arches on both sides of an off-centered gable. Therefore, the design interventions were added on to the partly built upper floor level and the roof terrace above it. The only part of the new extension visible, on completion, on the front facade was the staircase that lead one from the upper floor level to the terrace floor level. The fact that the facade was already a juxtaposition of multiple forms, the newly added structure had to quietly make its presence felt and at the same time complement the existing structure.

Picture courtesy: Studio Mohenjodaro

An uneven pitched roof made of PUF panel was devised, so that it could be in cohesion with the existing gable. The roof panel cantilevers outwards and gives an illusion that it is not resting on the wall underneath to give a sense of lightness associated with a floating structure. This wasn't in any way obtrusive or imposing on the old structure, rather felt like an organic extension.

Built over a 2500 sq ft footprint of the existing residence, the upper floor was refurbished to depict the classical elements of exposed brick walls, bare, cement ceiling and Jaisalmer stone flooring among other in a modern, contemporary language.

The most striking feature as soon as one enters the living space is the ceiling. Arched and dramatic, it steals the focus from the minimal living space.

Designed in red bricks, it balances the starkness of the simple living space by adding a touch of boldness to it. The scale of the space is purposely kept intimate and cozy by having a ceiling lower than the adjoining spaces.

The dining space, which in turn is a refurbishment of the old lobby is almost an extension of the living space, providing a cozy, comfortable space for the residence to enjoy a quiet breakfast. Since the dining space opens into the living area, the entire floor may also be used as one large space to accommodate guests in case of a gathering/ party.

Picture courtesy: Studio Mohenjodaro

The living is flanked by two bedrooms with their own dressing and toilet. Designed in raw, bare elements, the bedrooms exude a calm, homely, yet chic vibe. The exposed concrete roof and brick walls seem to cherish and celebrate their imperfections against the plastered white walls. The rawness of the natural material palette is neutralized by the warmth of louvered wooden cabinetry and the muted character of the mustard Jaisalmer stone flooring. A sitting ledge next to the window is an extension of the inside to the outside, providing views of the urban-scape against the setting sun.

Project: Residence 2105 Project Location: Chandigarh Architecture Firm: Studio Mohenjodaro

Instagram: Architect Incharge: Tarunpreet Singh Bhatia Photographer: Purnesh Dev Nikhanj

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