Habitat 67 is a housing project consisting of 354 identical prefabricated concrete units, a tour de force to what it means to deal with high-density structure for living. Gathering praise and controversial analysis from urbanists since its inception, this project is an irrefutable icon of experimentalism in architecture. A project that even in contemporary standards still holds a strong innovative streak and modernism.
Montreal-based Studio Practice is a collective that does not shy away from a good challenge, tackling head on the refurbishment of a historic apartment with no fear of rearranging it all to its basics. Taking advantage of the geometric nature and potential for natural lighting, the project in hand opens up removing all original walls. The addition of glass as the protagonist to concrete guarantees sensational visual lightness, as each room flows into the other in harmony.
A strong austere attitude is present throughout, reducing a complex daily life to very few elements making overt appearances. As the architects managed to make the most of the dynamic nature of the apartment, each room gets the chance to breathe with a tinge of emblematic art and striking colours. Kudos to the monochromatic play from the remaining walls and glossy partitions as well.
To mix post-war modernism with contemporary fundamentals and come out on the other side with relevant minimalism is an impressive work, as both styles normally push in opposite directions. H67 makes for a great case study in how to mix running trends with timeless design.
Photography by Adrien Williams & Gorgin Fazli.