Social Housing

Project: Honeycomb Apartments, Izola, Slovenia

Architects: OFIS arhitekti, Slovenia

his project is the winning entry in a competition to design two social housing blocks convoked by the Slovenia Housing Fund, a government-run program which provides low cost apartments for young families. The proposal won for economic, rational, and functional solutions and mostly for the excellent ratio between gross versus saleable surface area and the flexibility of the plans. Also, construction cost had to be at 600 per sq m of net surface area.

The brief required 30 apartments of different sizes from studio flats to three-bedroom apartments for two blocks of 60 x 28m. There are no structural elements inside the apartments, thus providing flexibility and easily allow reorganisation. The housing blocks are set out on a hill with a view of Izola Bay on one side and the surrounding hills on the other.

Because of the Mediterranean climate, outdoor space and shade are important elements. Sustainable Balcony Box: Each balcony module is an efficient system that provides shade, ventilation, and thermal comfort on the balcony and at the same time also in the apartments. Textile elements fixed on the front of the balconies block direct sunlight and accumulate a warm air buffer zone that provides additional heating to the apartments in the winter.

In the summer, the hot accumulated area behind the shades is naturally ventilated through 10cm perforations on the side partitions of the balconies.

Fact File

Client: Slovenian Housing Fund, Community of Izola

Project team: Rok Oman, Spela Videcnik, Martina Lipicer, Nejc Batistic, Neza Oman, Florian Frey, Marisa Baptista

Consultants: Valide d.o.o. (Structural), Emineo d.o.o. (Mechanical), Winky d.o.o. (Electrical)

Area: area per block – 2.294 sq m, construction area – 5.452 sq m, 30 apartments per block

Cost of construction: 1.54m per /block