How do you bring the charms of the countryside into an urban jungle? H&P Architects drew inspiration from Vietnam’s iconic rice paddies in the contemporary Terraces House, a home in Hà Tĩnh that gives residents space to cultivate their crops on the roof. Created as part of an agriculture development series, the Terraces Home serves as a model of sustainable development with its inclusion of urban agriculture and rainwater recycling.
True to its name, the Terraces Home features a terraced rooftop with planting beds and wooden surfaces. The terraces mimic the Vietnamese rice fields and each level is backed by a strip of glazing that lets natural light into the interior and provides framed views of the plants and sky. Irrigation systems fed by recycled rainwater are installed along the length of the roof to ensure constant watering year-round. The plants help protect the home against solar heat gain, dust, and traffic noise.
“Terraces home serves as a constant reminder of the origin of paddy rice civilization in a flat world context threatened by various types of pollution currently at an alarming level,” write the architects. “It is, at the same time, expected to promote the expansion of farmland plots in urban areas with a view to securing food supplies for future life.” The home is entered through black perforated folding doors that open up to a large play area with a tall ceiling. The ground floor, which steps up from the play area, includes the living room, dining room, and kitchen, while the upper levels house the bedroom, study, workshop, and additional multifunctional spaces. The home is set back from a perforated wall in the rear that lets in natural light and ventilation.
Images © Nguyen Tien Thanh