Wallflower Architecture + Design completes a home cooled by water
Located in Singapore, the for this new home features a screen of mature trees from adjacent properties and a light, year-round breeze. The owner’s program was for a contemporary home that prioritized environmental coolness in the tropical humidity while being able to enjoy the luscious surroundings.
The concept developed for the home by Singapore-based Wallflower Architecture + Design, inverted planning norms common in local residential planning. To fully appreciate the visually rich natural environment and stretch the potential for visual depth and distance, the main living room and study were located in a second-storey pavilion. Visitors are guided to the living pavilion above via a spiral staircase that touches down within the entrance foyer. Above, a dark reflecting pond surrounds the pavilion. The second-storey pond is also designed to thermally insulate the dining, bedrooms and family spaces underneath from solar heat gain. In the same way, the water body above also helps to regulate temperature swings within the house.
The first-storey residential and household service functions are delineated by a long, continuous light and air well that is paralleled on the ground by a similarly long and continuous koi pond. As with the second-storey pond, the air well and first storey koi pond is also designed to facilitate the micro-cooling of first storey rooms and spaces. The pathway doubles as a conduit for prevailing breezes; the koi pond’s 30-metre length and 2-metre width exposes a 60-square-metre surface to those breezes for evaporative cooling. All this happens within the house.
As a gesture to the prominent role that water plays within the residence, an oculus within the pond highlights the main entrance, the circle of sunlight cooled and animated by the constantly changing sinusoidal patterns of refracted rays through the water above.