project 27

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This is the story about saving a house “going” downhill.

Situated on a steep terrain, this building is one of the typical for the region, made of stone masonry, wooden beams, and walls from braided dry branches, plastered with a mixture of mud and straw called “chit”. Due to the lack of drainage and waterproofing to stop the penetration of groundwater as well as the fact that the building is situated on a large rock, the outer corner of the house has cracked overtime and it is beginning to yield which requires urgent constructive measures to stop the house from “sliding” downwards. After a series of consultations, the Structural Eng. Vesela Roussaffova took the challenge and came up with the most delicate solution possible – on the ground floor a reinforced concrete inner shell is poured, which "grips" onto the rock, and thus stops the sliding.

Placing counterweights at the corners of the structure was the solution reached by compromise, agreed by both the architect and the client. The house had been gutted fundamentally and all the wood in bad condition was replaced. The new restoration processes for the house uses the traditional techniques typical for the region. Thanks to the knowledge and patience of the executor Naso Ezhev, the edges of the ceilings, the doors and the plaster are traditionally designed. The visible stone masonry is cleaned and sealed. The wooden floor slabs together with the ceilings’ wooden claddings, doors and wall renderings were all replaced in an authentic manner.

Stonewalls were cleaned and sealed. New concrete remained visible. Thus, tradition is combined with contemporary decisions applicable not only in both the structure and in interior solutions, but also in recreating the heating installation, fire alarming, and wooden window frames. The owner furnished their house with a hint of retro socialist era twist and the piling up of objects from different historical periods creates the feeling of authentic ageing. The result is an artistic and greatly pleasing place to live in.