Stacked House

Homes | New Delhi
A compact residence in a dense urban locality looks inwards to elevate the living experience.


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Daylight, ventilation, interconnectedness and privacy inform the design of this house located in a dense New Delhi neighbourhood. The team took on the challenge of <rt-red>creating an airy, day-lit sanctuary, expressed as two staggered duplexes around a central courtyard and a small rear courtyard that is staggered in section, allowing light and ventilation deep into the lower floor.<rt-red>

The west facing plot is enclosed by buildings on three sides with no setbacks, with the narrower face opening towards an 8m wide feeder road. <rt-red>The street-facing west facade, the offset central courtyard, and the diagonally placed third court form the three vertical spines around which all the rooms find their rightful place.<rt-red>

The primary central courtyard has been designed as a triple-height light coloured wall to act as a reflector for the south light into the internal spaces that are staggered around it. <rt-red>The courtyard is also flanked by verandahs that are outdoor extensions to life within the house and a place for different family units to be able to chat across from the space they occupy, like in an old fashioned aangan.<rt-red>

To maximise heights, an innovative hybrid structural system has been used, comprising a modular metal grid of beams and columns with concrete slabs poured within the frame, accommodating the beams within the slab. <rt-red>This also creates seamless sightlines with no visual obstruction and exposes the structural system—making the house a frugal yet finely crafted expression of its materials.<rt-red>

The design employs an earthy material palette to elevate the tactile experience of the shell complementing the open, airy spaces. <rt-red>White plastered walls, exposed metal work and white terrazzo flooring populate this shell, facilitating the overarching intent of crafting light and roomy volumes.<rt-red> Subverting the archetype of poorly-lit-row-houses characteristic of such dense neighbourhoods, the design of Stacked Courtyard House proposes an <rt-red>alternative morphology for residential developments in Indian cities.<rt-red>