H50 Apartment Block
In Petralona, the oldest district of Athens, 314 architecture studio has designed an apartment building called H50. It can be best described as a white solid, perceivably monolithic structure. The plot measures 118 sqm and is close to ‘filopappou hill’, a well-known archaeological park of the city.
The two storey structure houses apartments, a roof garden and an open area at ground level. The concept for the block was a desire to have the building be perceived as a monolithic structure made from a single piece of stone such as a marble. The architects aimed to create contrasting rough and smooth textures of this rock like volume. On the south-east side, the building opens towards the street, and here the patios are located. The apartments look out onto the streets and the metal folding shades act as sun breaks for the rooms and the courtyard. The sweeping curves along the exterior make for an interesting block.
However, if this building will be a welcome addition to this old district needs to be speculated. The smooth exterior and strong statement of the monolith stands in strong contrast with the adjacent structures. Each individual building is a contribution to the urban fabric of the city; it can either revitalise or depreciate the urban quality of the local neighbourhood, or in fact may choose to have no impact at all. The affect of each structure on its surroundings must be one of upliftment; here, the question arises as to which category this building will fall in.
By: Sahiba Gulati