In English | ISSUE 2/2024

Timeless cast-in-place housing architecture

Timeless cast-in-place housing architecture
Photo credit: Lifehood Homes Oy / Juha Klemetti

Cast-in-place housing cooperative Panorama completed in Kauklahti area of Espoo comprises three similar apartments with slightly different facilities. Each apartment is 113 square metres in size, consisting of a living room and a kitchen, three bedrooms, a sauna and washing facilities, a utility room as well as a work space. The large balconies open into the Kauklahti vista of great natural beauty. The carport in the front yard is designed for five cars and equipped with charging stations.

The dark building mass of housing cooperative Panorama fits naturally on the small inclined plot. The main facade, made lighter by the large glass surfaces and balconies, gives an open and inviting impression. The black, smooth clay roofing tile adds nuances to the facade.

A cast-in-place building frame is not the easiest or the cheapest building method, but it is forever, points out the developer of the project.

With the cast-in-place method, concrete can be built into different jointless forms and elegant architecture without restrictions. The aim was to integrate as much building services technology into the building frame as possible to cater for both current and future needs during the building’s lifecycle.

The apartments feature plenty of fairface surfaces. The end result is rich with wonderful details, such as the staircase floor which only appears to be 60 mm thick although the true thickness of the intermediate floor slab is 300 mm. Another successfully implemented detail is the chamfer between the roof and the eaves on the main facade. It gives the structure a slim appearance despite being more than half a metre at its thickest.

A beautiful fairface surface is not obtained accidentally. Each worker on the site needs to understand that the finished concrete surface will remain visible and will not be levelled or coated later.

After casting, the concrete floors of the apartments were finished with MasterTop dry shake to give them a lighter colour, and a protective silicate coating.

Read the entire article in Finnish and see the images >>