In the spring of 2009 we were contacted by a structural planning company with the aim of proposing them a quick solution for expanding their company premises. Due to the increase in number of their collaborators it was necessary to create new well defined working spaces, areas for discussions, meetings, and reception. The dimension and the number of lavatories were not sufficient.
We started the creative process with these data. We presented them the sketches. They agreed upon these on the first preview… Meanwhile the beneficiaries also realized that they had to give up the idea of a rapid implementation of the project as both the complexity of the intervention and the technical state of the old house did not comply with their exigencies. Eventually we were asked to refurbish the entire building both in the interior and on the outside to the smallest detail (down to door handles). It was a long process in which the entire building was conceived anew. We underpinned, deepened the basement, demolished the staircase, etc. In the end only the external walls were left and the existent framing which were eventually strengthened.
The plot and the building are situated in a residential area of Grigorescu district, on a corner terrain across a small park. Many valuable buildings of Cluj have been still preserved in the neighbourhood. The concept of the house was determined by marking the corner with a simple touch which was to detach the volume off the old construction. The extension is a compact volume with a dome. Its hollows in the opposite diagonal corners were carved out. The rest is just accompanying music which is so necessary in achieving a work. As a consequence, the details of the closing of the façade, details of the beams, woodwork joinery, etc. became visible. On the beneficiary’s request we did away with the existing balcony of the old house. The not too successful planimetry of a hexagonal shape was torn by two brick pilasters. Thus it was suggested that the awkwardness of the existent house be diminished.
We opted for dark coloured, coffee-greyish, face brick, anthracite Rheinzink sheet covering, gray plastering, and andesite plinth and window sills.
The new structure is made of monolith concrete over which a thermal insulation was placed, covered in a ventilated air layer and face brick or Rheinzink sheets were installed.
The planning or re-planning of the interior was very important in order to establish the brand and the image of the company. The beneficiaries possess a dynamic work philosophy, many of the engineers being young. Generally they are concerned with planning prefabricated concrete structures for domestic or foreign works. Having these starting points we considered it appropriate to maintain the concrete structure visible in several places (staircase, walls). We established to make the desk in the manager’s office and that in the secretariat, of exposed concrete. For these we used a language in memoriam Carlo Scarpa.Location: Cluj Napoca, Romania Architecture: TEKTUM | arh. Tóthfalusi Gábor, arh. Tulogdy László György Interiour: arh. Tóthfalusi Gábor Project name: Black House Structure: SC PLAN31 SRL Construction: 2009-2010 Owner: Plan31 Romania
Ground floor plan: 175.44 sqm Project area: 334.15 sqm Site area: 503 sqm