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local materials, westcliff pavilion, johannesburg, south africa, prefab construction, floating stone wall, local materials, small footprint, minimize site disturbance, green design, sustainable design, eco-design, GASS, steel

By using steel instead of heavy masonry or concrete, GASS was able to achieve a variety of aims: first, the black steel became what they called the “primary architectural motif,” and it allowed the team to prefabricate the entire structure off-site and assemble a kit of parts in one fell swoop without having to truck a pile of materials up and down the road.

Additionally, the steel frame allowed for a very compact footprint. All that was necessary to construct the home was to dig footings for the frame, while the rest of the 2 bedroom cottage almost literally levitates off the ground. But it is of the unusual stone wall comprised of materials collected on site that the design team is most proud. Instead of creating a monolithic block in keeping with the region’s historical stone work, they opted instead for a floating wall that doesn’t rely on the ground for its stability; the effect is to completely ingratiate this modernist jewel in its incomparable natural context.

+ GASS Architects

Via Arch Daily

photography © Bernard Viljoen