A Serpentine Wall in This Taiwanese Home Divides Public and Private Space

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By Michele Koh Morollo
An undulating, S-shaped interior wall guides the programs within this Brutalist-inspired concrete abode.

In the city of Hsinchu in northern Taiwan, Taipei-based firm Yuan Architects designed a four-level dwelling with a Brutalist-style, raw concrete shell. An S-shaped wall weaves through the interiors, carving up public and private spaces shared by three generations of a family. 

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Built on the slope of a hill, the 4,776-square-foot residence is comprised of a basement and three upper levels with spacious, staggered terraces that connect the indoors with the beautiful mountain landscape of Hsinchu. 

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The architects designed a curving, S-shaped wall that runs through the house to create two main pockets of interior spaces. 

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This wall also helps define the perimeter between the indoors and outdoors. An entertainment room, plus a garage that accommodates two cars, is located in the basement. 

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The living, dining, kitchen, and study are located on the first floor. 

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The bedrooms are located on the second floor, and on the third floor is a multipurpose room with a mezzanine playroom for the children. 

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The western section of the house has a flat roof. At the middle of the interior wall’s S-formation, this roof transitions into a sloping mono pitch. 

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A large, squarish skylight is cut out from this sloping roof, so the terrace on the second floor is exposed to the elements, and natural light can enter from here to brighten the bedrooms and the multifunctional spaces on the third level. 

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"Between the public and private spaces on each floor, the three staggered terraces provide three different lifestyles and settings, enabling the owner, their parents, and their children to retain their privacy, but also enjoy enriching family interactions," says founder of Yuan Architects, Wen-yuan Peng. 

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Project Credits: 

Architecture and interior design: Yuan Architects 

Structural engineer: ChangHao Structural Engineering