Urban Redesign

Leuven, Belgium

The property is located in the centre of the Belgian university city of Leuven, which is teeming with historical places of interest. The city of Leuven is in the midst of a metamorphosis. Streets, squares, buildings and even whole districts are keeping step in their development with an equally rapidly changing society.

Modernization

The streets and boulevards are seamed with tightly packed terraced houses. Like a protective barrier, they shield the private gardens from the hustle and bustle of the tourists and local inhabitants and thus create an idyllic parallel world in the midst of the housing blocks. High-quality contemporary architecture is integrated alongside centuries-old established treasures. Old and new strengthen one another and together provide for a unique urban decor. The existing living space in the classic houses is often increased by extension buildings.

 

Architect
Wouter Bilsen munA
www.muna.be


Photography
Marc Sourbron


KELLER Partner
GLAS CEYSSENS
www.glasceyssens.com

 

Completion
2015

 

Know-how

This project shows how it can be done. The limited space was utilised without having to make major compromises. Thanks to the integration of the slender KELLER minimal windows® design sliding elements, the building owner didn't have to choose between garden or living space. If necessary the living area can be opened completely to the small garden and becomes part of it at the same time.

Floor coverings of the same colour and a transition entirely without a threshold make the concept a complete success. The elongated property defines individual comfort zones quickly and independently. The living and dining areas are connected seamlessly to the sunny outdoor patio. Dense grass surrounds the climbing frame like a carpet and leads over to the summer house. The dense roof of foliage of the surrounding trees provides pleasant shade on warm summer days. One can relax and listen to the twittering of the birds and go about one's business.

The white room carries the daylight far into the extension building. A homely, warm natural hue is provided by the individual partition wall between the kitchen and the dining area, which extends up to the ceiling with layered, brick-like wooden plates. Black seating furniture picks up on the colour contrast of the minimal windows® design frame profiles and convinces with this sophisticated link between architecture and furniture.

Courage to be individual

Extravagant shapes transform the room's ceiling into an interesting part of the whole. The small incline was skilfully integrated into the adjoining flat roof – in a playful connection with the minimal windows® frame – and becomes an architectural eye catcher. Sharp lines guide the eyes and leave them to rest on the deep blue of the sky. The L-shaped skylight set into the roof enhances the glass façade facing the garden as an unobstructed source of light.

By optimising the available space in the property and garden, it was possible to create a bright and inviting extension building without compromising. No restrictions are placed on collective family life here.


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