The House in 1970 by Architects Collaborative is a homage to the simplicity and stark materiality of the 1960s and 1970s. Set in a high-density urban precinct of New Delhi, the residence denounces the haphazard development and uninspired design intent of the houses abutting it. The project is nestled among similar-sized residences on a small 100-square-meter plot. Split into two similarly designed duplexes, an internal courtyard and permeable brick envelope cohesively unite this dual-family home.
The three-sided open-site plot with narrow front and back ends necessitated the third, longer face to introduce a sense of light-filled openness. With an open-ended three-bedroom floor plan, the small floor size compelled the individual duplexes to become intra-interactive, converging into an internal courtyard. Bound on either side by shared function spaces, with the private spaces overlooking it from above, the double-height courtyard becomes an interaction pivot. Peaking at the central courtyard and decreasing toward both ends, the perforations in the wall ensure privacy in the bedrooms while maintaining a consistent stream of natural light throughout.
The abundance of concrete, culminating at the coffered ceiling of the central double-height courtyard, natural wood grains, terrazzo, and hints of wicker and clear glass in the backdrop of a brick jaali, christen the house as an ode to the use of this palette and design, and its innate Indian-ness, towards the 1960s and 70s. The wall, defined by a gradient brickwork weave, helps bring the elements into all spaces of the house when required. Composed of a stark base palette, the distressed concrete of the structure’s formwork and the raw fly-ash brick feature veiled behind glass define the entirety of the house. With the use of terrazzo throughout as a substitute for stone or tiles, interspersed with simple natural wood and indoor greens, the house pays homage to the raw character of its materials and their timelessness.