A home that incorporates recycled materials from the jobsite

Located in the coastal city of Alibaug, near Mumbai, the House of Concrete Experiments is a residential project. The home was built for a client who went to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and showed a willingness to experiment with designs presented by Lead Architect Samira Rathod.

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A house made of concrete hidden in trees

Located at the foot of Deotalai in Zirad, the home and owner speak to nature through the surroundings, including a mango plantation. In fact, the home was built around the existing trees and plants to avoid removing them. This natural footprint guided the finished footprint of the house.

Related: Eco-concrete blocks are used to protect marine life

A staircase connected to a concrete house

The surrounding landscape also provided a natural dip in the country. It was converted into a sunken courtyard in front of the house. Trees surround the home and blur the boundaries between outdoors and indoors. Inside, the home features a minimalist design that only places walls where it is structurally necessary. The room is otherwise reminiscent of a studio, with a single bedroom for the residents and two more bedrooms for guests in a different structure outside the home.

Interior living and dining room in House of Concrete

Furthermore, concrete is used throughout the home. Concrete was poured in a thickness of 450 millimeters to 1000 millimeters for sound buffering and insulation that keeps the room cool. An old-fashioned active system uses the thick walls to transport air around the home via small ducts cut into the concrete. Additional passive design elements such as cantilevered overhangs provide shade.

A bedroom with concrete interior design

In addition, the concrete for the home contains a number of recycled materials as an additive to the mixture. These include stone chips, broken bricks and large pieces of waste stone. It was here that the experiment came in with varying finished textures throughout the room, including waste-cast concrete, water-jet concrete and molded concrete with pigments. For example, the guest part of the home is adorned with pink-blue concrete, tinted of brick powder. Similarly, the floors are formed of recycled stone pieces cast in concrete terrazzo. In addition, black kadappa, white marble and pink marble are all used to contribute to the design of the floor. With the main house cast in concrete, skylights and windows were used to flood the room with natural light.

Exterior area with large windows into the dining room

According to a press release, “The House of Concrete Experiments is in fact an experiment in all its aspects, its planning, construction, structural design, use of materials, play of light and shadow, and its services.”

+ Samira Rathod Design Atelier

Photograph by Niveditaa Gupta

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