Bavnehøj Youth Housing
Name of project: Bavnehøj Allé Ungdomsboliger
Type: Youth Housing
Size: 1.580 m2
Location: Bavnehøj Allé, Sydhavn, Copenhagen, Denmark
Architects: WE Architecture
Photography: Rozbeh Zavari, Marc Jay
Collaborators: JN Construction, Drias Ingeniører
Team: Marc Jay, Julie Schmidt-Nielsen, Kasper Munk, Alicja Krzeszewska, Corrado Galasso, Alexandru Pavel, Camille Tailardat, Philip Thusholdt, Simon Skriver, Ieva Vysniauskaite, Antonina Salmina, Marek Harnol, Sofie Brincker
Using wood in an innovative and expressive way, Bavnehøj Allé seeks new and ambitious standards within affordable youth housing. Bavnehøj Allé consists of 40 one-room apartments on 38-45 m2, with an impressive ceiling height of 3 meters. All apartments are accompanied with either a generous balcony or terrace. The apartments are detailed with honest materials such as natural wood and raw concrete (load bearing construction). The building is a simple composition of two diagonal blocks connected by a centrally located gallery on all floors. Through custom-made balcony cassettes using sustainable Accoya wood lamellas in a unique patchwork pattern, the façade contributes to a distinct, vivid and warm expression, while adding a semi-transparent extension of the apartments that embrace privacy as well as providing an active, living facade. Altogether this creates a poetic expression that defines Bavnehøj Allé as a local and architectural landmark while heightening the standard within affordable timber housing.
The facade’s patchwork is designed within a custom-made cassette system consisting of sustainable Accoya wood lamellas, which are consecutively arranged in a horizontal or vertical grid on top of a metal frame. The system consists of 8 individually designed balcony cassettes each with their own unique composition of vertical and horizontal grids. The 8 different cassettes are carried out in two different sizes resulting in 16 individual designs. The cassettes are composed in a rhythmic composition, which in its entirety creates a homogenies patchwork.
“At first glance, the facade appears to be a continues and rhythmic pattern, but upon closer inspection, the facade reveals the complex variation and unique façade design that does not leave two similar corners anywhere.”
“Accoya® is a sustainably sourced, CO2 neutral and 100 per cent recycle friendly wood as well as FSC®, Cradle to Cradle Gold certified holding the Nordic Swan Ecolabel. The wood holds a Class 1 in durability and comes with a warranty of 50 years above ground.”
“Integrated lights illuminate the facade from the inside displaying the depth in the extruded facade system.”
Bavnehøj Youth Housing consists of two apartment blocks positioned directly in line with the North-South and East-Vest going axis. Strategically placing all the practical functions such as parking, garbage disposal, staircases, galleries and entrances in the North-East facing shady courtyard, the disposition allows for balconies, terraces and the interior main living rooms to fully benefit from the sunlight during daytime as well as offering a stunning view over the nearby park and historical cemetery lying immediately to the Vest-South of the site. The minimalistic plan solution of the one-room open studios naturally integrates the exterior surroundings through the extruded facade containing generous 5-6 m2 big terraces / balconies. Inside the apartments, the end walls towards the balconies is one large floor to ceiling window, and in its 3-meter full height it adds a smooth transition to the exterior – integrating the balcony as a second room in each apartment.