(The top of) Dubiner Apartment House, Israel

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The building is located in Ramat Gan, a northern suburb of Tel-Aviv. It leans on a steep hill, overlooking the Mediterranean Sea and the Judean Hills. The basic shape of the plan is an elongated hexagon, created by an arrangement of prismatic hexagons. The lower three stories follow in their pyramidal build-up the retreating profile of the hill whilst the upper stories project in overhanging layers. The top floor forms a bridge connecting the hill top to the building. The hexagonal inside space creates a kind of stepped interior piazza with small scale landscaping. This space penetrates the whole building volume and contains the freely arranged vertical communications and the bridge accesses to the flats. The piazza has its own microclimate – shadowy cool in summer and sun-warmed in winter.
The anonymity of the conventional accesses to apartments from staircase landings and elevator lobbies is transformed into an open relationship providing identity for every flat. The two main entrances to the building, the upper and the lower approach roads, determinates the circulation pattern within the complex structure. This system though providing maximum privacy does not mean complete separation, but maintains visual contact with the surrounding and a constant change of view.
The typical floor of some 330 sq. meters area is divided into two or three apartments, designed throughout on a three-dimensional hexagonal pattern. The main feature of the apartments are its half covered and half opened polygonal terraces with major rooms facing and opening around it. The interpenetration of this solid and void prismatic form combined into the stepped section of the building express externally through its stereo metric structure the inner habitation activity.
Existing contemporary housing habitations in this country follow mostly a design pattern originally developed in other countries and hardly related to the Mediterranean conditions and its architectural heritage. Combining the local traditional small house accommodation with the many advantages of apartment living the project tries to establish a new relationship between living habits structure and environment.

Zvi Hecker
Alfred Neumann

gross floor area:
ca. 2.200 m²

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