This project, based in Gajwa-dong, a town in Incheon, South Korea, used to be covered by the sea and has since become an industrial city. On this block, lumber mills, subway construction sites, and factories line the street, while apartments surround the area. The block was once owned by a historic family, and there is an old Korean traditional house that still exists, keeping their spirit. This tile-roofed house was built in pine trees from Baekdusan in the late 17th century to endure 400 years.
The young owner was running a restaurant on this land and discovered the boundary of his plot extended to an additional piece of land 13 feet wide and 65 feet long. The site suddenly came out without any specific program, without any context, so this building was created in order to build a context within the town. The shape of the land was very simple, and the program was open to all possibilities. Given creative freedom, the architects built a tall, vertical structure and divided the floors. Since the south side of the building was attached to the neighborhood, that side was actively blocked, while opening the north side to face the land of the family and new residential areas. The striking zigzag stairs were installed on the west side of the building, facing the 400-year-old Korean traditional house. This was an homage to the faltering stairs in Sigyeongjeong Pavilion in Gwangju, Jeonllanam-do. The exterior was finished in exposed concrete with wood grain. Using a traditional material like the old house was first considered, but a material that would capture the flow of time seemed like a better fit. The interior was finished with cement blocks and the entire building was finished consistently in calm gray. We think the biggest characteristic of Korean architecture is 'dynamics' by reiteration of spaces to induce dozens of layers and movements. To suggest these dynamics, the floor slab of the third floor is stair-like. This space will be used as a public area such as a seminar room. A huge glass door was installed that can be raised toward the old Korean house to the west. The stairs on the north side crossing the curtain wall were painted in gaudy red. That line is suggesting past, present, and future alterations.
Architect : Hyoungnam Lim, Eunjoo Roh in studio_GAON Project Team : Minjung Choi, Sangwoo Yi, Seongwon Son, Sungpil Lee, Hanmoe Lee, Haelee Jung, Joowon Moon Photographs : Youngchae Park Translation : Joowon Moon Location : Gajwa-dong, Seo-gu, Incheon, South Korea Use : Neighborhood facility Site Area : 294㎡ Building Area : 110.70㎡ Gross Floor Area : 217.05㎡ Building Scope : 3F Building-to-Land Ratio : 37.7% Floor Area Ratio : 73.8% Structure : Reinforced Concrete Construction : Yeziin Construction Finish : Exposed Concrete Design Period : January 2012 - September 2012 Construction Period : March 2013 - August 2013