Green Line is a solitary house that effortlessly blends with its surroundings.
Dealing with the harsh landscape of Warmia in north-east Poland, architect Przemek Olczyk was inspired to embed the building in the morphology of the plot.
The plot has a natural fold that was the starting point for the design of the building’s body. A 90 cm reinforced concrete slab suspended above the falling terrain forms an extension of the upper elevation, creating a distinctive yet lean line from which the building takes its name and character.
Reinforced concrete slab supported by a system of columns provides a clear zoning of the house; the living area is on the ground floor and the bedroom area on the upper floor. The horizontal layout of the building is made even more distinctive with a green roof line shifted relative to the ground floor. It gives the impression of a naturally created horizontal fracture, opening towards the lake.
Skilful adaptation of the architecture to the structure of the plot ensures that the scale of the 500sqm house does not overwhelm it. Manifest external stairs, characteristic more of public buildings than single-family houses, provide an interesting architectural detail.
Due to the strong winds in this part of the Warmian Lake District, the design employs an atrial layout. The screen of glass walls of the building provide a transparent shield while maintaining important viewing axes for the users.
The internal atrium strengthens the sense of privacy. Depending on the user’s needs, large curtains can be closed and opened, thus opening or closing the courtyard. The glass-walled corner on the ground floor – with a free plan – overlooks the south-west and guarantees access of natural light to the most usable area for the inhabitants.
The key assumption of the project, and the tenet of the philosophy of shaping space at Mobius Architects studio is to enable reception of architecture from the inside. This is the main element of the project, which, as emphasised by architect Przemek Olczyk, allows people to both "have their cake and eat it".
True to the proverb, the architecture of the house remains visible to its users, while adding value to the surroundings.
The layout of the building in the form of the letter "L", in turn, reproduces the traditional organisation of farm space in the Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship. The facades – mostly glass-walled – are supplemented with aluminium plates and ceramics.
A wooden lamella detail in the gable walls, thus making a clear reference to the gables of the Warmian-Masurian cottages often decorated with boards arranged in various patterns. The simplified form of the roof with a 45-degree slope also refers to traditional rural buildings.
A key detail of the roof is a vertical skylight, which asymmetrically divides the slope by opening the interior of the private zone to the surroundings. The roof of the building is mostly covered with grass, with concrete slabs used from the side of the open atrium. This is an aesthetic device designed to emphasise the modern design of the building.
From a distance, however, masked by the green roof and an earth embankment, the house blends in with the wild landscape of Warmia, almost disappearing from view. Yet, there are spots where the architecture reveals itself by organising the space according to the needs of its users.