[ Block of Habitats ]
+ The New Generic Masterplan at The Age of Hyperobjects +
The block of Habitats is a new generic masterplan in the age of hyperobjects. It is based on the hypothesis that all current master plans are formal hybrids of historical archetypes whose original contents are no longer relevant in present-day. The block of Habitats reverses this formula in crossbreeding the inherent contents of such historical buildings while losing the signifiers of their forms. BIG’s King West Street project is taken as a case study which is derived from Dutch structuralist precedents; Aldo Van Eyck’s Orphanage House, Piet Blom’s Cube Houses, and Hans Kollhoff’s KNSM Eiland Block.
The block of Habitats is the amalgam of contents rooted in the aforementioned precedents. The result of such synthesis is an uncanny mega block comprised of stacked layers of mat buildings each containing disengaged communities of habitats. Orphanage House inspired the idea of mat-building which promotes self-organized and autonomous communities over society. Cube Houses with elevated core accesses resemble tree housings with modular voxels implying the equality of parts and therefore individuals. KNSM represents the typology of the 20th-century urban block which is derived from the socialist city that implies an organization of metropolis consist of different classes. BoH’s strange realism is the outcome of the fusion of paradoxical contents whose formal signifiers have been dissolved into a new whole.