Diploma Vår 2018

An Urban Apartment Building in Oslo

Kaja Elise Skaskievicz

The quality of life in a city is closely related to the quality of its architecture. It is the building’s presence that makes up the character of our cities which in the end affects us and our everyday life. Therefore, the quality of the buildings, their façade and their identity are something I believe needs to be addressed with great importance.

My diploma project is a proposal for an apartment building in the center of Oslo. A six stories urban apartment building, a “wall-building” accommodated with a variation of bay windows, French balconies as well as ordinary ones.

The project builds upon my two main architectural interests: the plan for living and the role of the facade, in relation to the program urban apartments. I have looked at how the facade and the floor plan could relate to each other on equal terms.

The floor plan is a concrete abstraction; the orthogonal view of a horizontal section of a building. When drawing a plan, the architecture is imagined and illustrated. It’s a readable medium showing a structure and a way of life. Like in the plan of Palazzina de’ Salvi designed by Pietro Aschieri in 1930.

The façade is the wall between the privacy of an a­partment and the public space outside. A two-way monologue: the mediator between public and private, negotiating between the inside and outside. It has to add to the quality of the city as well as providing the comfort of life within the home of an apartment. Like another reference, Albert hall Mansions, designed by Richard Norman Shaw in 1880. There is a great potential for addressing the façade in the design process. Giving the façade spatial significance could favor both the city and its residents.

The main concerns in the project are the durability of apartments, and how the building relates to the city and provides comfort for its residents. I also believe that a renewed concern for an apartment’s ability to withstand time could increase the quality and sustainability of architecture of our cities.