A D LAB
This quiet low-rise cul-de-sac of semi detached houses at Jalan Binchang is similar to many in Singapore. Constructed mostly in the 1970’s, the pairs of two storey brick houses are now at the stage in their building lifespan where renovation is eminent.
The designers saw the development of the quaint neighborhood and its natural evolution as a main source of inspiration in the design of no. 67 Jalan Binchang. They brainstormed on how to enlarge and rejuvenate the existing semi detached house while maintaining a harmony with the existing built environment, the history of tropical residential buildings and with the natural environment.
The designers looked at the existing building as one would study a living organism that needed to adapt to a new environment. Instead of demolishing its embedded history and reinventing it as something completely new, they decided to use its structure, its internal logic of organization and meaning as a starting point to the design, and to build upon this pre-existing pattern and structure to evolve it into a new form and space.
The architects find it important to study how space can evolve with time and with the changing conditions of the inhabitants so that the lifespan of construction can be increased. Also as a way of reducing waste, savings cost on the project, and minimizing disruption to the neighbor’s house, the designers decided to retain the entire 2-storey semi detached house on the site.