The project concerns the re-use and conversion of former offices in a classical Brussels town house built in 1904. It was presumably built together with the neighbouring house. Both buildings are listed on the architectural heritage inventory as an “ensemble of two eclectic buildings”.
Project Name: Babilou Daycare
Studio Name: Architectslab
The conversion of the three storeys into a day care centre was conceived as a new entity, with a new staircase making the connection and integrating the storeys into one. This staircase is located in the place of the former mezzanine floors, which were previously only accessible from the main staircase.
The city garden between the basement and ground floor level remains accessible to the day-care centre by means of a footbridge that starts from the existing balcony.
The plywood day-care centre was designed with a different atmosphere for each floor, and each floor is distinguished by its own colour. Children and parents enter on the red basement level, where the buggy zone, lockers and desks are located. The new stairs lead to the green ground floor level, where the children can use the space of three interconnected rooms. The city garden functions as the fourth room of the ground floor level. Finally, we reach the last pink level, where the children can withdraw throughout their day.
In order to make optimal use of the existing spaces, modules were devised on the last two levels, which provide a ‘classic’ changing room.
The nursery, which is located in a historic building, thus offers an answer to contemporary needs.
Architectslab is a designcollective which functions as a team of architects and designers collaborating on a variety of projects.
Each individual commission is studied and designed in team, which allows a diversity of visions for each specific design.
Synthesis helps to create coherent and structural design-ideas in which timelessness and functionality are very important.
A contemporary designlanguage is used, but avoided are superficial details and tendencies who just happen to be in vogue at that point in time.