With its articulated brick cladded façade, Studio Toggle’s ‘Edges Apartments’ lights up one of the back-streets of the predominantly expat neighborhood of Salmiya, in Kuwait.
“A simple rhythmic twist, achieved by transposition of the vertices on either side of a finite axis imparts dynamism and drama to the façade.” say the architects. “A very restrained palette of locally sourced natural brick and exposed concrete finish further emphasizes the massing and gives the building its unique personality.”
The idea for the façade was conceived by Studio Toggle as a solution to constraints that included severely restricted budget and low tech construction techniques. The angular façade functions as an effective wind breaker, mitigating the constant strong wind blowing from the sea as well as affording a certain amount of privacy to each apartment.
“Aesthetically the façade represents a break from the generic curtain walled apartment blocks that is the norm in the region, choosing to play with the massing and shadows rather than a collage of materials. The ventilated brick cladding with a weatherproof coating acts as an effective thermal protection as well as being hardy enough, along with the exposed concrete finishes, to withstand the harsh desert climate. The major windows are recessed to block out the direct sun and Aluminum louvers are employed wherever possible to reduce the heat gain and the glare.”
On the ground floor, an exposed lobby adjacent to the parking area provides access to the staircase, lifts and a communal gym, which faces the street and is partially shielded behind aluminum louvres. The lobby’s glass-reinforced concrete ceiling incorporates recessed lighting in an angular channel that directs residents and visitors towards the various entrances and continues the sharp lines of the facade.
Project: Edges Apartments, Salmiya, Kuwait
Typology: Apartment Building, 10 Floors
Budget: 2.5 million Euros
Built Up Area: 25000 Sq. Ft
Design team: Gijo Paul George, Hend Almatrouk