Dowlat II Residential Complex - Aga Khan Award for Architecture
Aga Khan Development Network

Dowlat II Residential Complex

Dowlat II Residential Complex

Location: Tehran, Iran (Central Asia)
Architect: Arsh Design Studio
Client: Ali Nazemian
Completed: 2007
Design: 2005-2006
Site size: 535 m²

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This project counters the two-dimensional facade and level open-plan floors of the typical Tehran mid-rise with a building that seeks a three-dimensional approach. The facade—a wooden grid—is punctured with a variety of openings that extend the building’s volume beyond the main envelope and allow unpredictable configurations dictated by the preferences of the inhabitants. At the same time, each apartment is split level, allowing the creation of a roof garden that is directly accessible from the top-floor apartment. In addition to being responsive to its users, the building adds a sense of excitement to the public streetscape that it overlooks. The architects see it as a model and as a design strategy that can be adapted to a number of similar sites, to enable the creation of well-designed living spaces that can be modified according to clients’ needs, without significant cost premiums and with the use of local materials and technologies.

2010 Award Recipients