Housing Pilon stands in an unusual location, on the site of an abandoned quarry next to main Ljubljana ring road.
The remains of the quarry previously appeared as a ‘wound’ in the natural landscape with an old, limekiln building made of stone and protected as a cultural monument, standing on the corner of the site.
The programme asked for positioning of a new large housing complex as the new urban landmark related to the highway passing right next to the site, while preserving, repairing and replanting the abandoned quarry space.
The location is treated sensitively - the rock wall is preserved, protected against crumbling and planted with greenery. 140 apartment units are then structured into a complex of two separate buildings that are further divided into two slabs connected in-between by communication cores.
The slabs are slightly shifted, following the configuration of the terrain and thus establishing two different communal spaces - the concrete access platform on the front and green courtyard on the backside of the complex.
The internal structuring of the complex follows the idea of ‘condensation’ of the city condition vertically: smaller, single person units are positioned in the lower part of the buildings. They are followed by duplex apartments, which are organized as row houses around open, double height courtyard spaces. Luxurious small penthouse apartments are built on top.
These different typologies are clearly discernible on the facade, while the overall image of the complex remains homogenous. The facades are conceived as interplay of open and closed elements. Massive storage boxes for each unit separate glazed balconies, acting as noise protection from the ring road, and are clad in velvety black fibrocement plates. Storages normally confined to cellar spaces and hidden, thus become a constitutive element of the facade and divider between different apartments.
Volumetrically the complex follows silhouette of the hill, simultaneously paying a kind of ‘homage’ to the former quarry and at the same functioning as an eye-catching ‘landmark’, a strong orientation point on the Ljubljana ring road.