The Helmet House is a family house located in Copenhagen, a densified area as with so many other capitals. As the city is becoming more dense, it’s hard to find a house for an average large family without the prices being unreasonably high. An average size family should be able to stay in Copenhagen and not move. We gave them a house so that they could. An ordinary house transformed into extraordinary architecture. The quality of architecture. That’s something that everyone should have access to.
The client’s brief was to expand the house without removing too much of the garden area. We suggested an extra floor level as an expansion. In that way the square meters could be doubled up while the garden area remained the same. The new floor level would in some parts extend to the ground floor, connecting the extension to the existing house into a single volume. In this way the house would be more assembled than before.
In addition to creating a unified volume, one of the main ideas of the extension was to distinguish the new parts from the old. We therefor decided to keep as much of the old house as possible such as windows, walls, flooring and materials. We only did a small restoration of the old facade, giving the bricks a light colour of grey. The facade of the new extension on the other hand has a dark grey colour with a different kind of material made out of rubber from Firestone; a watertight and durable material, also used for the roofing.
With both a difference in material and colour the extension becomes a clear contrast to the old building making sure that it would be obvious from the street to point out what is old and what is new. We wanted the contrast between the old and the new but at the same time gather it. Collect it. The extension together with the old house becomes one single volume.
This meeting between the old house and the extension would also be experienced interiorly. The staircase leading up to the first floor, is what connects the extension to the old part. The staircase however is hanging from the first floor, never completely touching the ground floor. When walking up the stairs from the ground floor of the old house to the first floor, it would be clear that you’ve entered the extension. The old wooden flooring from the old house is replaced on the first floor with a big soft, rubber floor. The interior is bright with lots of windows with natural light piercing through. Your first view will be of the winter garden, facing south and a perfect spot to spend all the late summer evenings surrounded by exotic plants.