Renovation of a historic row-house reorganising functions and building parts

Ghent, 2016 - 2018, private client

In the street there’s a house with a beautiful facade. However, the house keeps stumbling over itself. The house finds this to be an annoying matter. Then again, there’s a lot of stuff in the way and it’s sort of gloomy inside. The stairway clumsily takes up most of the hallway, a bit too close to the front door. An underused hallway cuts up the plot in small rooms. The long extension behind the house pushes the garden all up against the back wall of the plot. The plot has been ‘room-ed-up’. They are thinking about the house and there’s mentioned: more practical, more open, more light. They are thinking about the house and there’s conversation: about life, about places, about situations. An important remark is made about the bathroom on the first floor, it has to be kept as it’s already finished.

Rearranging begins with picking up something and putting it down a bit further. Removing something which is not desirable or adding something else. Cutting and pasting till the collage is just right. Or till the décollage is just right. The stairway gets a new spot a bit further down the house. The new entry hall is spacious, with an internal window for waving to folks in the kitchen, for tying shoelaces. The kitchen is located at the street side. Further up in the house: the dining room with new stairway and vide. The parapet of the vide is a desk is a cabinet. The old rear facade ends up inside the house, with a small and a large opening: for looking and walking. Past the facade another facade. The new back facade is a glass bell encompassing everything, whether it’s massive or not. The windowsill is a cabinet is a frame. There’s a richness hiding in complexity, in ambiguity, in the double. The house does not longer stumble over itself. And the bathroom was kept where it was.


Lime (structure)
2BSafe (energy and safety consultant)

Con-struct (general enterprise)
Peter Hillen (carpentry)

















visualization rear facade  

new situation  

existing situation