Rural House Renovation in Zhoushan / Evolution Design

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Rural House Renovation in Zhoushan / Evolution Design

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© YongZhang
© YongZhang

Text description provided by the architects. 70% of the houses in a village on one of Zhoushan’s islands are hollow, but the stone structures, with their building materials sourced from the region, are quite solid and integrally built. The roofs have already partly collapsed, which can be expected given the technology and material conditions of the time. Two of the houses close to the seaside, unoccupied for 70 years and with a drop of around four metres, face south, their gables facing east and west, orienting them towards the sea and protecting them from the typhoons. These two particular houses were specially chosen.

© JianPing Yang
© JianPing Yang

Everything for these two “solid” houses begins and ends with the interior decoration. Between three and five days, balanced attention should be paid to local architecture, interior structures, landscape and other spaces. Construction will only take 40 days (actually 31 days), so how on earth can everything be set up for filming in a way that wouldn’t affect local business? There are only a few hundred inhabitants on the island, with all living and manufacturing supplies coming from the mainland. An architect faced with such a task should really consider all these key aspects to find the most appropriate course of action!

© YongZhang
© YongZhang

With the ups and downs of the terrain and picturesque sea views, the design here should be more about how to capture multi-angle views from inside the house rather than how the house looks like it. -same. The house incorporated into the new design is on the eastern side of the lower elevation set of old houses, where the only land available facing the sea is, and it serves as a precise remedy to the lack of depth and breadth old houses must realize modern social gatherings. The new house is built of reinforced concrete and blends perfectly in terms of structure and space while remaining free from excessive decoration. The concrete was specifically chosen here to help the house resist erosion from the harsh marine climate.

© YongZhang
© YongZhang
© YongZhang
© YongZhang

The whole structure is made up of rooms renovated from the two old houses plus a studio converted from an old kitchen with a collapsed roof that is now replaced by a glass ceiling. There is also a newly built reinforced concrete “box” facing the sea connecting two courtyards on the upper and lower levels, respectively, to accommodate the master bedroom upstairs and two guest bedrooms downstairs. The new “box” space therefore serves as a common space for social and recreational activities.

© YongZhang
© YongZhang

The “new box” on the site is designed to be quietly retro. In the presence of the centuries-old beauty of the 70-year-old houses and the supreme natural landscape, any fresh element seems unnecessary and charmless. This is why the new structure is meant to complement and respect the region instead of gaining a major chunk of attention, which essentially underestimates the full potential of the structure. Here there is a balance between new and old and understanding and harmony, and here modern “aesthetics” and old “leftovers” thrive in coexistence.

© YongZhang
© YongZhang

In view of the general layout, time has made the two houses part of the old village. To local villagers, the new box may seem obscure or even trivial. It is only by entering the courtyard from the old street that you will discover the secrets of this new space. The seascape “peaking” at 270° is saved for last when considering spatial sequencing, but when viewed above the sea, the design appears to be a new organism facing both today’s today and see you tomorrow.

© YongZhang
© YongZhang
Ground floor plan
Ground floor plan
© JianPing Yang
© JianPing Yang

This program is mainly concerned with the renovation and design of buildings, and not just the pure transformation of interior space. Public concerns should be taken into account and site selection as well as the local environment and people should be taken into account, and the interior design can also include how best to handle the owner’s personal issues.

© JianPing Yang
© JianPing Yang

Completion must mean that the structures are immediately usable, with perfect harmony between the building, the structure, the electromechanical components, the interior layout and the landscape. To complete everything in terms of design and construction in 60 days (really 40 days with the Zhoushan project) is certainly a big challenge, and the practicality and degree to which the technological requirements, the need for materials and the implementation process can be completed on time should always be a determining factor when deciding on such a task.

© JianPing Yang
© JianPing Yang

Today, most of our concerns are often placed on tall, narrative-themed buildings, and we usually turn a blind eye to many homes that are humble yet still relevant to everyday life. Many public buildings may look attractive from a distance of around 200 meters, but from up close at 20 or even 2 meters they become noticeably less polished. We pay too much attention to how beautiful a building is on the outside while ignoring what’s on the inside. Perhaps we need our homes to be pure, discreet, reserved and less “noble”, and if a television program can entertain the public while conveying a notion that makes people more aware of the vital relationship between the environment and man-made structures, encouraging them to care about our own living environment and maximize their own spatial enjoyment and spirit made possible by architectural aesthetics, so what’s the harm in making a such an entertaining process?!

© YongZhang
© YongZhang

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