The investor wanted to expand the existing house from the 1980s because of a growing family. Although it would be cheaper, he did not want to demolish the house, but just refurbish it and adapt it to a contemporary lifestyle. This implied a demanding construction approach of high complexity and dexterity. Although the windows mainly kept their positions on the façade, the interventions referred, above all, to their integration, enlargement, and alteration. What also changed in the new version was the geometry of the attic, including the slopes of roof surfaces. The old render was replaced with ceramic tiles. In addition, the old house was "broken" in half by the insertion of a contrastingly designed joint, which visually created two houses. Thus the volumes of the newly made house were connected by a ridge line in the same direction, while the enlargement, the extension of the house is manifested in a third, completely new, also by joint separated volume, whose roof ridge takes a perpendicular position relative to the ridge direction of the volume of the "old" house. The newly created configuration now forms an L-shaped floor plan. A dialogue opens up between the old house and the new section. Despite the numerous interventions, the old house's spatial volume has been largely preserved and, with the new extension, it creates an integrated and organic whole, adapted to the spirit of the times. The gabled roofs of each volume received their own inclination, but also different heights of the eaves’ lines, which makes the whole composition dynamic and special. The cluster of volumes, in a certain way a simulation of a small settlement, gives the project picturesqueness and layering. The scale of construction in the neighbourhood and its morphology is accepted, but is transformed according to contemporary expression. "A small village" - as a sensible transition between the city and the open structures in the landscape. The inspiration for the structure and design was found in rural farm buildings and their expressive power, but also in the residential houses of small towns like Jastrebarsko. The chosen concept opened up the freedom of design, which again created both diversity and density interwoven with small details. The differences between individual volumes can only be spotted through careful observation. The choice of ceramic façade cladding, the way the tiles were laid, their size, texture, and colour reveal the complexity of the approach in the elaboration of the composition, so that everything is perceived as a single unit. In laying ceramic tiles, a modern interpretation or innovative design was based on the role model of the patterns of planking and the arrangement of plank interstices in vernacular wooden structures used in the construction of residential houses and adjacent farming outbuildings, while the grey-brown colour and its tones are reminiscent of the grey patina that wood obtains over time. Despite the inherited limitations of the old structural layout, the adaptation has created a rich interior configuration with a number of visual attractions in the form of galleries, passages, and niches. A walkable and open space was created, visually intertwined with a lush garden. As the building plot touches two opposite streets, the project also included the refurbishing of a historic civic house on the main street of Jastrebarsko. During the refurbishing, only the street façade was preserved in the existing house; everything else was torn down. As a continuation of the street façade, a large monovolume space was conceived in the depth of the courtyard. It currently has no function, but its integrity makes it suitable for a variety of purposes. Roof surfaces were given particular attention and especially studied during the refurbishing of the house. The large scale of the newly created space has become conspicuous in relation to the size of the neighbouring houses, which is why it was covered with a multiply fractured geometric pattern made of a combination of triangular surfaces. Due to the requirements of the Heritage Protection Office, the street roof surface is preserved in its size, slope, and type of tile, while the courtyard surfaces are clad with sheet metal. The plasticity of the roof configuration, enhanced by the expression in the stacking of the primary and secondary wooden rafters, was achieved through targeted and calculated geometric creases.
Mr Tomislav Curkovic and Mr Zoran Zidaric are founders and principal architects in Dva arhitekta office.
Mr Tomislav Curkovic, born in 1961. in Zagreb. Graduated from The Faculty of Architecture in Zagreb. After graduation works at architecture office "Interinzinjering" in Zagreb. From 2009 until 2005 Mr Ćurković was the president of Croatian Chamber of Architects.
Mr Zoran Zidaric was born in Sibenik in 1962. Graduated from Faculty of Architecture, University of Zagreb, in 1987. Until 1991. worked as freelance architect, after what he forms an office with Mr. Tomislav Curkovic in 1992.
Lecturers in Croatia and abroad, guest critics at The Faculty of Architecture in Zagreb.