Charles Holland Architects
This project is a collaboration between CHA and Piers Taylor of Invisible Studio. It is located in Oosterwold, near Almere in Holland, a new area of self-build housing development. The houses are subject to a number of rules that dictate their overall dimensions and land use beyond which there are no planning restrictions. Owners are required to cultivate their land as ‘urban farms’ and to form mini-collectives with their neighbours to manage the supply of services and infrastructure.
Our design is for a timber-framed and clad tower, a simple structure with some of the characteristics of a fairytale. The exterior timber boarding is profiled with decorative 'sun and moon' motifs and is characterised by a pyramidal roof with large overhangs. The interior is conceived as a continuous spiral with rooms demarcated by changes of level rather than walls. The ground floor contains a garden room that opens onto the productive garden. The floor above is part kitchen and part dining room.
The top floor contains a work space, den, bathroom and a ‘bedstee’, a traditional Dutch idea that allows the bed to be shut away when not in use. At the top of the house the owners have a dramatic view for miles across the flat landscape while at night they can watch the stars.