Ho Chi Minh City’s shortage of green spaces has led to a host of environmental challenges such as air pollution, overheating, and urban flooding. To combat these effects, local firm VTN Architecture specializes in designing houses that incorporate trees and other greenery.
In a new residential development in the city, VTN founder and principal Vo Trong Nghia designed Stepping Park House: abutting a green park to the north, the residence’s lush interiors and facade that’s festooned with foliage give it a greenhouse vibe.
Private spaces, such as the bedrooms, are contained within the solid volumes. In the open, sun-exposed areas within the void, Vo planted trees to help improve air quality and add color to the interiors.
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The chimney-like void that slants through the home provides natural ventilation, so its owners can reduce their air-conditioning usage despite Ho Chi Minh City’s hot, humid climate throughout the year.
"Walking through the space, one will feel the wind moving from the living room to the top floor of the house," says Vo. "The green facade eases the intense sunshine of the tropical climate. The model becomes a precedent for housing in tropical climates."
On the ground floor is a single-car garage, a kitchen, a guest bathroom, and an open-plan living and dining space that opens to the park.
On the first floor are two ensuite bedrooms. Along the perimeter of the void on this level is a corridor with two trees, which creates an experience akin to walking in a park.
The master bedroom is located on the top floor, along with a light-filled, solarium-like area with various plants and trees. This area is designated as a family gathering space.
"The void incorporates both circulation elements and natural elements like plants and trees, providing the private rooms with additional natural light. It gives a feeling of continuity of the park, to all three floors of the building, creating an environment similar to an indoor forest," says Vo.
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