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Living on Top | Hui Long Guan Beijing

Bart Reuser, Marijn Schenk, Michel Schreinemachers, John van de Water, Luuc Sonke, Maja Popovic
Beijing Zhuzong Vanke Development Co Ltd
Hui Long Guan, Beijing, China
26.000 m2
Special thanks

Living On Top is part of the master plan in Hui Long Guan, Beijing. It provides affordable housing for the ‘Ants Tribe’ and was developed together with four other Dutch offices and five Chinese offices. The project was originally initiated by the NAi in cooperation with Vanke in the VANKE-NAi Matchmaking Program. This program aims to match Dutch architecture expertise with international community projects and shows that architecture can play an important role in formulating solutions to widespread global problems and help to build a more sustainable future.

There are big challenges in an apartment building containing units that vary from 14 to 21m2 combined with a rather thin plot to build on. This apartment block is based on a dense layout of the units with a double loaded corridor. By taking some out on the upper floors the corridor opens up and creates (communal) space. This can be used to bring more green in to the project and facilitate social interaction.

Although the apartments are rather minimal, they become small urban villas on top of the building. To emphasize on this the upper floors are built up out of brick standing on its own feet. The apartments are orientated with respect of the privacy of each individual and the opposite buildings. On the fourth and fifth floor the owners can use the outside space to create a green atmosphere. 

Other office involved in the project were Arons en Gelauff, BARCODE Architects, KCAP Architects and Planners, NL Architects, NODE, O-office Architects, standardarchitecture, URBANUS, NO 9 Studio, CAFA.