The Canal House
The design of The Canal House draws its appearance from three sources. These are dreams, location and minimalism. The vision of the owner, who dreamed of such a house. For him, The Canal House is a dream house. The second source of inspiration for the look of the house is the location. The house is located at the end of dead-end Strzegowska Street. The Canal House takes full advantage of the opportunities offered by the design of a detached house with southern and western exposures. The house design takes maximum advantage of the fact that just beyond the fence to the south and west of the border with a wooded city square. The functional minimalism of the house manifests itself in every element of the house, through functional rooms, simplicity of form but departs from minimalism by creating a kitchen in a separate room, an enclosed corridor space and a functional exterior facade, with walls. The house is created on a rectangular plan. The communication system in the house consists of rectangles, one is a staircase and the other is a rectangular corridor. These three factors, dreams, location and functional minimalism had the most significant influence on the design of The Canal House.
The space in the house was organized in such a way that residents could enjoy their private space and surroundings. It was largely the absence of other houses to the south and west that significantly determined the design of The Canal House. The house's green surroundings, devoid of neighbors, made it possible to design a modern, modernist house that was open to the environment, yet friendly to the residents. The goal of the construction was to create a house that would meet the requirements and could accommodate a large family. The Canal House is a five-bedroom storied house designed on a rectangular plan along with three terraces that on three levels, first floor, first floor and roof. The Canal House has almost 300m2 of living space, divided into two floors. The living area is almost 250m2, as the body of the building includes a garage for two cars.
The name Canal House
Nothing defines a single-family house project better than its name, The Canal House. A modernist single-family home where landscape and architecture have come together to set the tone for a desirable living space for residents who can appreciate the location, and the surrounding vegetation. Canal House was chosen as the name of the house because the building is located on the Bydgoszcz Canal. The name of the house refers to the canal, 140 meters away, which connects the two rivers Notec and Brda. The name Canal House also refers to the space and the amazing views from the roof terrace. The roof terrace allows residents to enjoy the silence and space, which is disturbed only by the sounds of birds and the croaking of frogs.
The Canal House is located at the edge of a green city square next to the Bydgoszcz Canal in the Miedzyń district of Bydgoszcz. The Miedzyń district is located in the western part of Bydgoszcz. The house was designed to be rooted in the landscape. It could take full advantage of the green square, which is located on the south and west sides of the property.
A flat overhang roof around the building
The visual decay of the house was achieved by adding flat overhang roof around the house. Looking at the house from the street, the 120 cm wide flat overhang roof allowed for an amazing flattening effect of the building's mass. The flat overhang roof on the north side of the house has two functions; on the one hand, it created a canopy over the entrance to the house, and on the other hand, it is also an outdoor terrace from which the residents use an external staircase to access the terrace located on the roof. An flat overhang roof on the north side connects the terrace located at the level of the second floor with the roof terrace. The arcade also provides protection from rain on the north side of the house for its residents. The lack of external supports supporting the flat overhang roof gives the body of the house a lightness and a characteristic modernist shape.
The projecting flat overhang roof is on two levels: the overhang over the first floor as well as the overhang over the second floor. It is an open canopy that extends beyond the outline of the building walls. The projecting overhang has created a new open space around the building.
The flat overhang roof on the south and west sides has a practical function in addition to its aesthetic function. The flat overhang roof allowed, on the one hand, to create shade, especially desirable during the summer heat, and created space to hide external window blinds. In such a way that the external blinds do not interfere and do not spoil the body and facade of the house because they are completely hidden just in the flat overhang roof. In this way, the hidden external blinds are practically invisible and do not negatively affect the appearance of the building. The flat overhang roof became the space where the exterior lighting of the entrance to the house was also installed.
The flat overhang roof on the south side at the height of the pillars has narrow holes, free spaces on the side of the house wall. These narrow holes in the flat overhang roof allow evergreen Clematis to climb up between the floors, the first floor and the first floor. The leaves of the fascine cover the exterior walls of the house to the south with greenery.
Architecture of Canal House
The facade of the house is simple and linear. The house is situated directly on the ground just above ground level. The house's location at the end of the dead-end Strzegowska Street guarantees silence and great privacy. Just behind the house to the south and west is a city square. The public space is overgrown with trees and bushes. The ponds in the square are home to rare amphibian species. There is a strong connection between the quiet, private spaces of the house and the openness of the space surrounding it. The combination of comfortable private space with one easy access to the open, peaceful views of the greenery surrounding the house provides a positive experience for the home's residents.
The exterior walls of the house are three-layered. The outer layer was built with dark gray bricks. The house connects to the ground with sand-lime walls and gray paving stones. Both materials allude to local deposits of building materials and sand, which was mined in large quantities during the construction of the Bydgoszcz Canal hundreds of years ago. Vibrant green ivy on the south wall of the house and greenery in pots on the roof allows the house to blend in with the crowns of the surrounding trees.
Facing Strzegowska Street, the east side of the house is more enclosed. There are two garage doors leading to two garage spaces on the first floor. In contrast, the south and west sides, with floor-to-ceiling windows in the living room, are fully open to the surrounding space of the private garden and surrounding greenery. On the north wall of the house are on the first floor: the entrance and narrow windows of the bathroom and technical room. On the first floor there is an exit to the flat overhang roof and bathroom windows.
Winter-green frost-resistant ivy Hedera helix climbs the walls of the house from the south. The colorful variety of ivy is characterized by golden-green leaves with five corners about 5-7 centimeters in diameter. The ivy climbs on a steel structure attached to the wall of the house. The ivy is trimmed and shaped in such a way that it covers the windows very little only to create interesting light patterns as the sun's rays move through the house. Hedera helix 'Gold Child' ivy was selected as Ivy of the Year for 2008 by the American Ivy Society.
Rooms and bathrooms surround a single, interior rectangular corridor. The corridor, like the main artery of the house, connects all the rooms, the staircase, the exits to the house on the first floor and the first floor. The straight angles, lack of curves and impracticalities make Canal House an ideal place to live and relax after a long day at work. The house is characterized by the use of thoughtful and practical solutions that are useful and practical for everyone.
The concept of Canal House evolved from a simple rectangular block stretched deep into the lot, along an urban square in a single-story style of functional modernism. The space of the house was carved out to create spaces for work and relaxation. Windows were designed in directions to enjoy privacy and views of the green urban square. Window locations screened the principles to let in as much light as possible and provide natural ventilation, while maintaining privacy and utility where needed.
From the outside, the house does not appear as spacious as it actually is. On the one hand, this effect was forced by the shape of the plot, which is relatively narrow, necessitating the creation of a narrow front facade of the house to the east. On the other hand, this positioning of the house was influenced by the desire to make maximum use of the urban green square, which is located on the south and west sides of the house. The house is oriented so that its occupants can enjoy its green surroundings as easily as possible. Except for one bedroom, every room and the kitchen have windows facing south or west to take full advantage of the beauty of the surroundings.
The living room has wide sliding glass doors. These lead to the terrace on the west side, through which residents have free access to the garden and covered terrace. The social area, indoor and outdoor, seamlessly integrates with the natural rhythm of the dish. A garden located on the south and west sides of the house with medium-sized plants creates a welcoming space that extends the living room outdoors. The private garden integrates with plants and trees growing wild just beyond the fence, outside the property boundary.
A minimalist living room of more than 40 sqm also serves as a dining room. The living room is a separate common living space of the house. The living room has floor-to-ceiling glazing. Panes of glass form the west and south walls of the living room.
The kitchen is organized as a separate, enclosed room that residents enter from the hallway. Separating the kitchen from other rooms in the house is intended to isolate the room, which is a source of various smells and sounds. Canal House is a house designed for a large family, a family that prepares and eats meals prepared in it. An enclosed kitchen is a proven solution that allows you to freely prepare any meal. Even one that is time-consuming and generates intense smells, in a way that absorbs other residents as little as possible. Only an enclosed, separate kitchen allows you to fully enjoy the open space of other rooms.
Building & area
The staircase is located on the south wall of the house. Residents of the house enter the house from the north side. Vis a vis the entrance to the house, there is an open staircase on the other side of the hallway. It is fully glazed on the south side. The entrance to the house is an open space that invites residents inside. The house wants to welcome the residents, to share its warmth and security with them.
The staircase connects the two levels of the house is made on a structure of simple steel beams on which wooden steps are superimposed. The modernist steel beams take very little of the light that enters the house through the glazed exterior wall of the staircase.
On a sunny day, when the occupants of the house walk in front of them, the view of the glazed staircase and the sunlight that shines through it illuminates the staircase. The open space of the hallway, combined with the sunny staircase, provides a positive feeling from the very moment one enters the house.
The sun's rays also shine through the leaves of the ivy climbing the exterior walls of the house. The wind moving the leaves creates a lively dance of shadows and half-shadows on the steps of the staircase and the floor of the house. This movement of shadows enlivens the stable walls of the house, giving a different perspective to its occupants.
The windows in the upstairs rooms form a ribbon punctuated by functional exterior walls. The windows wind from the east side across the south side to the west facade of the house. Two upstairs rooms on the west side of the house have doors. The doors allow access to the terrace, which is located at the height of the second floor on the west side. To compensate for the temperature fluctuations in Bydgoszcz, windows in the house are opened to provide airflow in summer and are triple-glazed to retain heat during winters.
Terrace and roof garden
The house is topped by a flat, overhanging roof that provides shade. The terrace on the first floor is covered, designating outdoor gathering places. A metal staircase leads to the roof, where there is another terrace, a place for stargazing and an area for solar panels.
The rooftop terrace, along with the flat overhang roof, is the other distinctive element of Canal House. An exterior staircase located on an flat overhang roof on the north wall of the house leads from the second floor to the roof. The flat roof is an additional space made available to residents as another space. An exterior staircase leading to the roof terrace is located on an flat overhang roof on the first floor on the north side.
Openness to the surroundings
The Canal House was built in such a way that its residents can enjoy their surroundings in the best possible way. To interfere as little as possible with the environment, but at the same time to be useful and practical. The result is a house that serves the residents' lifestyle and creates an exciting place to appreciate the surrounding greenery of trees and shrubs to the south and west.
Since the conception of Canal House, sustainability has had a significant influence on technical and design choices. Its architectural form was designed to take advantage of the property's best solar orientation, aiming for thermal comfort and minimizing the need for artificial climate control in the house.
Canal House has a heat pump in addition to photovoltaic panels on the roof. The cost of heating the house is significantly lower than heating the house with gas. The recuperation system saves additional money when replacing the air in the house.