N.B.K. RESIDENCE (2)
Photos courtesy of Ieva Saudargaite
Mixed tenure housing
N.B.K. Residence (2)
Located at the ninth and last level of the Plot # 2251 project which we conceived in 2008 and for which construction ended in 2013, this three-storey apartment is articulated through an independent structure capping the building. Structurally, the apartment only shares the building’s vertical circulation core, as well as the perimeter along which its two peripheral walls lie. Beyond the ninth level, the structure of this residence becomes autonomous, rendering it morphologically detached from the edifice. The result is what resembles an independent house placed atop a building, rather than what is commonly known as a penthouse or roof level apartment.
The articulation of this project is also related to its geographic location. Virtually situated on the former demarcation line which separated east and west Beirut, this apartment opens up onto “the hell” of its city, placing it neither east nor west but in between. Whereas usual preference for Mediterranean roof apartments is to turn their backs on the urban fabric in exchange for a sea view, this apartment is oriented toward the city, taking advantage of the setbacks imposed due to the surrounding projects defining its entire periphery. These include the Maronite Cemetery, the Beirut Hippodrome and various institutional buildings. All relatively low-rise, these guarantee view corridors extending in the southwestern direction towards the Chouf mountains which subside in the southern suburbs of Beirut, as well as in the western direction and towards the former demarcation line defined by Damascus Road.