Elfin's Tuesday A+A= Architectural Appreciation! This week- Housing.

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  • Elfin's Tuesday A+A= Architectural Appreciation! This week- Housing.
  • 5lab
    Member

    thing is, are council tower blocks grim, or do the people who live in them make them such? I can’t see much in the way of improvement by shipping everyone out to a big out-of-town estate..

    Premier Icon cheshirecat
    Subscriber

    [img]http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3288/2604071142_3bc61b7830.jpg[/img]

    I’m lucky enough to live near this house.

    I have always liked the lotte glob house.
    Outside

    Inside

    I also quite like the longhouse designs on skye.

    yesiamtom
    Member

    DezB, there is some great riding behidn there in bucklands. Loads of little alleyways and catwalks you can ride up and around at night. The fact its a rough area just makes it all the more fun.

    Elfinsafety
    Member

    thing is, are council tower blocks grim, or do the people who live in them make them such?

    Bit of both. they tend to start off nice, but lack of maintenance and general neglect sees them becoming run down quite quickly. Add to that poor build quality and materials, and they can be shabby, depressing places to live in. Most residents tend to be decent people, ime, but a few can ruin it for everyone else. When you live in a place which is neglected and ignored, you tend not to care too much about it, speshly if you feel that others tend not to care too much about you.

    Tower blocks isolate and alienate people from one another. There is little social interaction, and little trust and respect between people who don’t get to know each other much. There’s none of the leaning on the garden fence chatting to each other, of course.

    Tower blocks suit young mainly single people and studenty types who will only live there a short time and just need a place to sleep at night mostly. They aren’t suitable for families, the elderly, the disabled or those with mental health issues.

    I don’t particularly like fallingwater its a bit medallion man type house, I expect its all carpeted walls and waterbeds inside. It neither fits in with its surroundings or contrasts with them, its just rather dull and of its time.

    I disagree. I think although it contrasts with it’s surroundings, it works really well as a house, and it’s interior is far from how you’d imagine:

    cbike
    Member

    Red road Flats. Due for Demolition. They seem to have the most Homely Community centre ever. Its not new, its not fancy, but its working! The asylum community is actually pretty strong and tight knit too. As usual you only get out what you put in. (Note the carry outs!)



    mcmoonter
    Member

    These are the Ravenscraig Flats in Kirkcaldy, Fife.

    They were built to house retired people, so there was no vandalism, they were built in the sixties and still wearing well.

    pitduck
    Member

    good thread ๐Ÿ™‚

    CountZero
    Member

    Time for a little contrast I think:

    A quietly understated country pied-a-terre: Biddestone Manor, Wiltshire. Sadly, not mine.

    Not a fishing village, Castle Combe in Wiltshire, not far from Biddestone. These houses seem to keep being re-invented as coastal; they were a fishing village in Dr. Dolittle, and here they’re a Devon or Dorset fishing village in Steven Spielberg’s new movie, Warhorse.

    Still in the same area, a 17th Century farmhouse, now a hotel/restaurant/tearoom.
    Fosse Farmhouse, Nettleton.
    All very typical of South Cotswold architecture

    Elfinsafety
    Member

    This one’s a bit mental:

    Teletubbies meets Gaudi! Dunno if it’s actually inhabited, but it’s certainly unique.

    A very interesting/revealing thread.
    Keep it up elfin.

    dxb
    Member

    Really enjoying the architectural appreciation threads Elfin, both this one and the last. Keep it up!
    but easy on the architect bashing fella, yeah i’m an architect and feeling a little sensitive ๐Ÿ™‚ I felt I wanted to offer a counter to a couple of your statements.

    “the needs of the dwellers carefully considered. sadly, this is all too rare, as architects themselves will never live in such places”
    not strictly true, at my last practice in Manchester my colleagues and friends lived across the complete housing spectrum, From low rise council flats, High rise council towers, shared terraced housing, new noddy box flats, conversions etc… All sorts! not all architects ponce about in black polo necks ๐Ÿ™‚

    “It’s just a pity that the architects forgot to give people who actually lived there any real space”
    Whilst I agree that most modern flats are woefully small, I believe this is because of the clients/contractors/developers who are there trying to make their money, smaller the unit the more they can shoe horn in and sell. The architects don’t get a whole lot of say on the actual size as they’re not paying for the development.

    It’s disappointing as having such cramped new homes only encourage transient inhabitants, move in put up with the tinyness for a few years then move to the suburbs for space – it wont allow for a sustainable community of families, as you’ve rightly critiqued about the tower blocks.

    Anyway mini-rant over and feeling better, Please do keep up the good work and i’ll look forward to your next Arch-Apreciation thread.

    Here’s my contribution, an area of regenerated dockland in Amsterdam where many architects where invited to ‘do’ a block each, the only planning restrictions being it had to fit on the plot and not exceed a specific height. It’s really eclectic and I think its great.

    Borneo, Amsterdam

    Premier Icon MSP
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    I don’t particularly like fallingwater its a bit medallion man type house, I expect its all carpeted walls and waterbeds inside. It neither fits in with its surroundings or contrasts with them, its just rather dull and of its time.

    I disagree. I think although it contrasts with it’s surroundings, it works really well as a house, and it’s interior is far from how you’d imagine:

    I think that actually confirms my point, dark wood, artificial light, brown table cloth and beige plates and a picture of a posed man smoking a pipe wearing a tank top. Its the look every chest wig wearing man would have loved to re-create in the 70’s.

    I love the Borneo Sporenburg project in Amsterdam as well.

    Love Borneo. Looks very similar to Tuttu Frutti. And in a way reminds me of some of the ideas behind the Royal Crescent in Bath.

    slugwash
    Member

    Here’s a picture of my son Alfs on a recent trip up to London. He’s standing in front of Charles Rowan House (London WC1) where he was born in a basement flat 12 1/2 years ago. It was built in the late 1920s to house married police officers and their families and is rumoured to be the first flat block in the UK built with flushing toilets and plumbed in bathrooms in each apartment. It was fairly run down and housed several crack dens in the early 1990s but is now a mix of private homes and council owned properties. (There’s a similar building down near the South Bank but they lopped the top off and visually ruined it a few decades ago). Worth having a wander through the courtyard if you’re in that neck of the woods and like architecture.

    london_lady
    Member

    I am trying to convince someone that buying this would be good…

    Premier Icon DezB
    Subscriber

    dark wood, artificial light, brown table cloth and beige plates and a picture of a posed man smoking a pipe wearing a tank top.
    ๐Ÿ˜†
    All the things I look for when choosing a house

    Elfinsafety
    Member

    Pfft. All Falling Water needs is a bit of carpet/wood floor, and some lighter wood details. Dunno where you’re getting the medallion man thing from; I’d imagine such a person would prefer a big Hollywood style mansion.

    but easy on the architect bashing fella, yeah i’m an architect and feeling a little sensitive I felt I wanted to offer a counter to a couple of your statements.

    Heh! Not all architects are gits, just quite a lot of them…

    I used to live next to the Ranwell East estate in Bow, East London. An architect’s vision of the future; lots of 4-6 storey blocks, connected by walkways which allowed people to walk from one end of the estate to the other, without needing to go down to ground level. Wonderful. Allowed burglars, muggers and junkies unprecedented access to a maze of corridors and stairwells, and made any pursuit by police virtually impossible.

    The main mistakes made were putting far too many people in too small a space. Not necessarily the architects’ fault, I agree. Just pisses me off when they bang on about ‘visionary’ and ‘ground-breaking’ architecture, without having a clue about the real needs of the end users. Lessons have bin learned, and new social housing developments tend to be lower level and with more space. This is proven to be a more socially successful model of housing. Ah well, at least ideas were tried. The Barbican in the City is a very des res location, and some of the flats there are lovely. The main difference is, that it’s not full of scum like me and Binners, mind. But it’s still not an ideal development for families really. It’s too closed in, too cramped, too claustrophobic.

    Borneo, Amsterdam

    Sorry, but that just looks a bit of a mess, to me. Just a load of rectangles, with some sticky-out bits. I can’t see how it differs from any other dense terracing. I prefer a nice Victorian terrace where the owners have painted or modified their own houses to be a bit different. I’m sure a lot of self-congratulatory back-slapping went on with the Borneo project, but I fail to see how it’s in any way special or unique. It’s just a row of boxes. Sorry, but I’ll say it as I see it. The traditional centre of Amsterdam is far more aesthetically pleasing.

    It’s really eclectic and I think its great.

    You would. You’re an architect. You have an aversion to curves… ๐Ÿ˜‰

    I am trying to convince someone that buying this would be good…

    On that evidence alone, I too would have to oppose such a move.

    Even in Tokyon, a place famed for lack of space and incredibly high land values, someone’s managed to make something that looks unique, inviting and fun.

    Might be crap to live in, I dunno, but at least it looks cheery.

    pilgrimbob
    Member

    If you like Falling Water you could always invest in your own version. Not sure if wearing a medallion is obligatory ๐Ÿ™‚

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