beijing design week 2016 — in the historic hutong area near the white pagoda temple in beijing, china, stands ‘split courtyard house’ — a project of urban regeneration designed and developed by TAO trace architecture office. the transformation of the traditional hutong typology aims to generate an adaptable space able to match our new lifestyles through the creation of an experiment on scale and construction.

tao trace architecture office split courtyard house beijing design week designboom
the famous beijing hutong area includes pitched roof buildings covered with grey tiles and bricks

 

 

 

the historic urban structure is composed of well-preserved single-story courtyard houses (siheyuan) and narrow alleys (hutongs). in these traditional structures, the central courtyard is the place where all rooms front. such spatial layout responds to the traditional family’s way of living — but it no longer suits the lifestyle of today’s young individuals. the core need of individual living is privacy; and with this in mind, TAO trace architecture office has divided the site into four sets of spaces, each with a room and a private small yard. with each set facing a different orientation, they form a pinwheel configuration on layout.

tao trace architecture office split courtyard house beijing design week designboom
this project launches the urban regeneration plan for this area

 

 

 

when changing the idea of collective living to individual living, the spatial sequence was carefully considered and transformed. traditionally, the person enters the courtyard and then the room, meaning the courtyard is public and the room is private. in ‘split courtyard house’, the path is from room to yard, resulting in the yard being the most private place. although small in size, the enclosure is great in significance, as it creates an intimate relationship between man and nature.

tao trace architecture office split courtyard house beijing design week designboom
two apricot trees and two date trees are carefully chosen for the four yards

 

 

 

in each room, the bed is lifted into the attic space to free the ground area, designated for living room and bathroom. the skylight and the full-height glazing facing the yard bring in natural light and make contact with nature, offering a quiet and introverted atmosphere. the central joint of the four individual units is turned into a shared living space for dining and chatting.

tao trace architecture office split courtyard house beijing design week designboom
in each room, the bed is lifted into attic space to free the ground space

tao trace architecture office split courtyard house beijing design week designboom
the yard is small but of great significance for chinese life

tao trace architecture office split courtyard house beijing design week designboom
split courtyard house is a new type of single story courtyard house inserted into the hutong context

tao trace architecture office split courtyard house beijing design week designboom
the central joint of the four individual units is turned into shared living space for dining and chatting

tao trace architecture office split courtyard house beijing design week designboom
the skylight and the full-height glazing facing the yard bring in natural light

tao trace architecture office split courtyard house beijing design week designboom
a window is opened between the shared living space and each yard

 

 

project info:

 

project title: split courtyard house
client: huarong jinying investment & development co., ltd.
location: no.24, gongmenkou sitiao hutong, xicheng district, beijing, china
program: shared rental house
architect: hua li / tao (trace architecture office)
design team: hua li, zhang feng, liu xiaoya, lai erxun, liu wenjuan, igor bragado fernandez, zhang
zhiming, shen zhouya, zhao wei
structural system: luxwood lightweight wall panel system
site area: 97 ㎡
floor area: 82 ㎡
design: 2014.01 – 2014.06
construction: 2015.02 – 2015.05

Save

    have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.

    comments policy
    LOG IN
    designboom's comment policy guidelines
    generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
    the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

    what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
    let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

    - please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
    - please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
    - please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
    - please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
    - please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
    (there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
    in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
    the best 100-200 entries too.)

    a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.

    PRODUCT LIBRARY

    a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

    architecture news