Minimum Dwelling – Dwelling Minimum

The extreme climate I have decided to settle on is a dry and hot climate. There are aridity, sandstorms and a sort of drought. The scenario behind this proposal is like predicting that the climate change is going to cause the places where we are currently live in to turn into a desert in around 2050’s and 60’s. The temperature will be increasing day by day, and resources will be about to run out. Considering this situation, I proposed a practical and sustainable dwelling trial which stands for the idea of minimum existence both for itself and living beings around.


About the subject of climate change we, as a group, approach to architecture from the side of critical regionalism. As Kenneth Frampton says architecture should encourage continuity of local cultural traditions because international style become placeless and there is lack of identity so there can not be such a thing like homogenous international identity. Every region is supposed to have its own culture, spirit, and architecture. At this point, Alvaro Siza argues that all traditions either change or transform or they die so traditions should be open to innovations.

Nature also practices a kind of “critical regionalism,” the belief that architecture should reflect the geography and culture of its setting. ¹ Then, I made some research about biomimicry. It is a process of using natural-world mechanisms to inspire man-made designs. It refers to imitating natural strategies (but not forms) to devise new sustainable solutions.² At this point, there comes the example of one of the arid climate livings I took reference from to bury the minimum dwelling I am designing, bury what is existed on the ground underground. Prevent heat gain by hiding in nature, and having few openings to outside. Also, the vegetations inside will refresh dry weather inside. There is a representation of this plant as a building in the poster, I worked on how this building can be adapted as a minimum dwelling.

When I turned back to the cases from vernacular architecture in such arid climates, I tried to find out what kind of sustainable solutions they brought in the face of climate change. They take place in the poster with details.

So, I say this dwelling minimum in terms of minimum waste because both this unit and inhabitants living in have the possibility to turn food waste and animal droppings into food balancing ecosystems by recycling, reusing them, and by this way, the unit cultivates land and improving it with hummus and organic materials to make farming or to use their self-grown food.  This dwelling stands for the minimum use of energy for cooling since hyperbolic paraboloid form of the roof both acts as a wind catcher and creates shade on outside spaces. Openings on the created form are positioned according to the prevailing wind so the wind comes in and go out by refreshing the air inside. Plus, vegetations are grown up inside help to increase the air quality in the daytime. This dwelling has a minimum use of water because it has a drainage system to get water from underground and it has the facility to collect the rainwater. Next, this dwelling existence minimum since it serves 1+1 adult together with animal and plants in minimum existence.


Some Examples of Vernacular Architecture in Hot-Arid Regions of Turkey, Fatma Nur Demirbilek, 1994.

Towards a Platform of Investigative Tools for Biomimicry as a New Approach for Energy-Efficient Building Design, Natasha Chayaamor-Heil and Nazila Hannachi-Belkadi, 2017


My very first house

I have already posted about this semester’s project before. Here is updated version and the final status!

My proposal is strongly based on Adolf Loos’ idea of spatial plan commonly known as Raumplan to a degree. The plan has several stepped levels and room sequences that are all visually or physically connected, and there are spaces at each level with different functions.

Raumplan House, Spain, 2015, Alberto Campo Baeza.

I refer to a particular house which a version of Raumplan is employed. It is Raumplan House, Spain, 2015, Alberto Campo Baeza. This house has three spiraling and diagonal interconnected spaces. I wanted to reinterpret this triple in my proposal since it provides anyone to see other two spaces exactly by standing in one, and anyone can able to see two different directions while standing in the middle space.

Also, the spaces are only visually connected and the level difference is high since the house has small site and needed to shaped vertically.  While adapting this three diagonal spaces to my house proposal, I have decided to decrease the level differences and provide access from one space to another.

Therefore, this is the way how spaces come together.

Möbius House, Het Gooi, 1993-1998, UNStudio. Diagrams.

I have Möbius House as my second primary reference.

What I have learned about Möbius House is that there are two programmatic lines which are positioned side by side horizontally and they interlock in a specific part. This ‘bow tie’ like configuration of two programmatic lines, which has sequence of spaces inside, made me think that what if this two lines of Möbius House was designed with Raumplan?

Diagrams. *It is about combining two of these diagonal space organization by learning from Möbius House.

Then, unlike the original configuration of Möbius lines, in my proposal the lines combined vertically (on top of each other) because of the vertical space organization of Raumplan House.

Exploded axonometric drawing of my house proposal.

After two lines started to position vertically I have reinterpreted the intersection part.

While Möbius House’s intersection part is dense, I have the exact opposite in my proposal. I designed it as a vertical void, as a vertically shared intersection part. Therefore, the form of levelling of this intersection part became different.

How I achieved this void?

Since I have two programmatic lines come from Raumplan. I planned that

One line has opening to this direction (kind of interior garden) while other opening has towards another direction. So, the different surface I designed below and the upper opening and the skylight act like this vertical shared intersection together.

House K., Germany, 2005, Titus Benhard. Site Plan.

While continuing my research, I came across to a house called House K., Germany, 2005, Titus Benhard. The house is in a suburban place. Its site is quite elevated from the lake level approximately 61 meters, and the distance between lake and the house is 330 meters.

I wanted to refer to this house’s ‘zoning spaces’ approach and how this approach works with the site. The house has two parts as front and back with a long separator axis between them. While the stepped arrangement of the spaces in back is in part a response to the sloped nature of the site, the spaces in front especially open out towards lake. The lake is on south-east direction.

Considering these, I have decided to locate my house proposal on to the site of House K. and apply these back & front conditions to my proposal as bottom & top. Therefore, I designed the bottom line as an open space reaches from the entrance (kitchen) towards the front garden and decrease gradually over several split levels. This means , on one hand the bottom line follows the slope of terrain, has spaces which are directly related with garden, and has zones such as kitchen, living (big spaces). On the other hand, The top line open towards lake and establishes a hierarchical sequence of rooms. Spaces of that line face with lakei and has rooms which have same or similar functions such as private rooms, sleeping, robing, child room (middle spaces).

site plan
Site plan of My House proposal

IMG_5619Other responses to the site: I changed the actual direction of North in order to provide better climate conditions and qualities to spaces. So, the house spreads east west direction and spaces face with south, southeast, southwest. There are spaces on the north direction such as studio, pantry, garage. Approach/access from road and main entrance are from northeast.

Secondary References: I refer to Möbius House’s kitchen and its positioning regarding the studio, garage, and storage places. The ceilings (upper slabs) of some bottom spaces became terraces to the upper spaces as in Möbius House. Further, the tectonic of my house proposal based on Möbius House’s materials: concrete + glass.

Plan drawings of my house proposal.
1/100 Section drawings.




In architecture the inspirations, quotations, references can be taken from the history of architecture, from the architectural works which were produced in past. Taking something as a reference, there can be used a few methods such as taking the thing directly as a quotation, reinterpretating, to adapt, to variate by giving references. Today, by using our case studies as source of quotation, we were assigned with a quick study; to make an architectural quotation. It is not must be the quoted thing to be physical thing, part of design or architectural elements, the ideas also can be taken as quote, but the thing that is going to be quote is supposed to be a something specifically belong to that case. A feature of the house or architect that makes it popular with, directly known with. Continue reading Quoting