Spiral House
© David Foessel

SPIRAL HOUSE

OVERCODE architecture urbanisme

PHOTOGRAPHS
David Foessel

CATAGORY
Houses

MANUFACTURERS
K-Line France, Soprema, ACOVA, NORDPAN RUBNER, OéBa, POINT P, Velux

YEAR
2021

LOCATION
Villejuif, France

AREA
80 m²

LEAD ARCHITECTS
Claire Garcia Barriet, Alejandro Garcia Marta

Mr. « M » and his family contracted the office to design their new home in a recently purchased small site up the hill of Villejuif city (125m²), a town in the suburbs of Paris.

Spiral House
© David Foessel
Spiral House
© David Foessel

The parcel is located in a garden housing district characterized by single-family homes. The terrain is south-oriented and directly accessible from the main road.

The family wished for a three-bedroom house, with a study area, living-dining room, and a garden totalizing a built-up area of around 80m².

The zone regulations allowed for a small 40% footprint of the terrain and required a pinch roof typology for the house.

Spiral House
© David Foessel
Spiral House
© David Foessel

In order to fulfill the client’s ambitions, a vertical construction was necessary due to the small parcel. Needless to say, the budget was not very extensive.

The first operation was to place the house offset from the street and back property limits, thus creating two different kinds of exterior areas around the ground floor.

Spiral House
© David Foessel
Spiral House
© David Foessel
Spiral House
© David Foessel
Spiral House
© David Foessel

The street offset is sufficiently big to allow the garden to work as a buffer zone from the street life.

Spiral House
© David Foessel
Spiral House
© David Foessel

Moreover, due to the difference in height from the sidewalk, a very efficient way of protecting the private from the public sphere.

Spiral House
© David Foessel
Spiral House
© David Foessel

The northern garden, on the other hand, works as a kind of extension of the living area with a very different kind of atmosphere, a place to gather and protect from direct sunlight on the summer days, a very intimate kind of exterior space.

Spiral House
© David Foessel
Spiral House
© David Foessel

The second operation was to project a strategy of minimal surfaces / maximal effect by negotiating between mass and terrain, views, and levels are created.

Spiral House
© David Foessel
Spiral House
© David Foessel
Spiral House
© David Foessel

The spiral organization of the house then interacts within the constraints and topography of the site in order to deploy a split-level typology where all the rooms are south-oriented.

In terms of materials, we deploy a construction system down to basics, so the inner envelope is made of painted concrete blocks with an exterior wood wool thermal insulation.

The staircase is left open resulting in a deep spatial sensation all over the house. The final mass of the project is then the result of the inner organization.

The kitchen then is half-sunken in relation to the living area so the sense of depth and volume is enhanced. The inner structure on the other hand is made in exposed wood giving a warm quality to the house.

Spiral House
© David Foessel


Spiral House
Elevation - South
Spiral House
Elevation - East
Spiral House
Elevation - North
Spiral House
Elevation - West


Spiral House
Plan - Mass
Spiral House
Plan - Ground floor
Spiral House
Plan - First floor
Spiral House
Plan - Second floor
Spiral House
Plan - Roof


Spiral House
Section - 1
Spiral House
Section - 2
Spiral House
Section - 3
Spiral House
Section - 4
Spiral House
Section - 5