Jinhai Lake, Beijing, China
The Twin Villa is located 60 miles outside Beijing in the Pingu District of China. The new residences are situated amongst a new residential and leisure development built around a man made lake. The existing farming community has been enhanced with a new village center and new farmworker housing. Market-rate housing is introduced that consists of a mix of housing for seniors, moderate-income duplexes, and villas.
The site is located on an island with fairly steep topography. The level of the lake varies depending on the rainy season leaving a portion of the lot adjacent to the water unbuildable. The Twin villa consists of a pair of monolithic volumes. The custom faceted concrete shell structures are nestled into the sloping hillside. The dynamic form burrows into the hill and cantilevers out over the downslope reaching out to the lake. The semi-subterranean building is embedded into the earth reducing the impact of the building on the landscape. The placement of the building on the site, together with the form and massing of the building, optimizes views while at the same time maintains privacy from the street and the neighbors.The pair of residential volumes are distanced by a central circulation spine. The interstitial space is a transparent threshold that serves as a visual connector to the lake.