An insanely designed residential complex in Singapore was crowned World Building of the Year 2015 last week during the World Architecture Festival. The vertical village, titled The Interlace, consists of 31 apartment blocks arranged in a “hex-angle” and stacked diagonally on top of each other.
The designer of the project, Ole Scheeren, is a German architect who worked on the assignment while running the Dutch-based Office of Metropolitan Art’s Beijing office. He then went on to set up his own studio, Buro Ole Scheeren.
Eric Chang, a partner at Buro Ole Scheeren, explained that the concept behind the Interlace was to figure a way to create high-density housing without constructing another tower block to add to Singapore’s skyline.
The Interlace encompasses 170,000 square meters and contains 1,400 square units. He told Dezeen:
“It is 31 apartment blocks arranged in a hexagonal configuration on a very large eight-hectare site.”
The apartment blocks, which each stand six stories high and 70 meters long, are arranged to create a series of courtyards and terraces at various levels.
The design allows residents to connect and interact with one another in order to build a sense of community. Chang adds:
“Each courtyard has a different character. And the orienting device for the residents is not the blocks that they live in, but actually the character of the courtyards. So they navigate and locate where they’re living by the different courtyards.”
Light and ventilation is made possible by the large multi-story voids between each apartment block. The project was completed in 2013 and features eight large hexagonal courtyards that make up the space at the ground level.
The World Architecture Festival 2015 occured in Singapore from Nov.4 to Nov.6. According to Archdaily, the director of the festival, Paul Finch, described the award-winning building as “an example of bold, contemporary architectural thinking.”
The description for the Interlace read:
“The Interlace is one of the most ambitious residential developments in Singapore’s history, generating an intricate network of living and social spaces intertwined with the natural environment. Instead of following the default typology of housing in the region–clusters of isolated towers–the vertical is turned horizontal…”