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House on the Swider River from ZUP-A, or how to remodel a recreational facility

24 of July '20
Technical data
Name: House on the Swider River
Client: private
Location: Poland, Otwock district.
Project: ZUP-A
Design team: Filip Gołasz, Anna Adamowicz, Damian Machnik
Area: 161m²
Cubic capacity: 700 m³
Visualizations: Monsumm


  • design
  • implementation


In Otwock County, in a bend of the Świder River, a single-family house designed by architects from the ZUP-A studio is under construction. This building, open to the surrounding nature, is the result of the reconstruction of an existing recreational building.

Thehouse on the Swider is located in the middle of a valuable natural protected area - the middle Swider valley. The site in a bend of the Świder River created a starting point for the design of the house, which is intended to draw as much as possible from the richness of the surrounding nature. Despite many restrictions related to forms of nature protection and the small width of the plot, the architects tried to integrate the building without excessive interference with the surroundings.

Dom nad Świdrem,
widok z góry

The added part is made in raw concrete


new life of the former building

The investors asked the architects to preserve part of the existing building, open up as much as possible to the surrounding landscape and create an interesting interior space to enjoy the qualities of the surrounding nature. The existing wooden building was designed to be converted into a fully functional sleeping area for a single-family home, and to be expanded into a living area with a living room and an open kitchen. Because of the meandering river's bends and its unique scenic qualities, the new part was created by superimposing two mutually twisted blocks: a concrete one and a fully glazed one, in order to let in as much light and the surrounding nature as possible.

Szkic koncepcyjny

project sketch


The architects kept a clear division: the former part of the house is made of wood, while the newly constructed one will be made of raw concrete. To further integrate the building into the landscape, the entrance to the building leads from an access leading through the existing orchard, which gradually rises above the ground level while creating an outdoor terrace.

Nowa, przeszklona

The house is located in the valley of the Swider River


As the architects say about the design difficulties:

Such an attractive location also brought with it many limitations and challenges. These were challenges of a technical nature - related to the difficulties of adaptation of the existing building substance - of a functional and ideological nature - resulting from the search for means by which to reconcile the investor's expectations with an attempt to fit into the existing natural context, and finally of a formal and legal nature - resulting from numerous forms of nature protection or the presence of floodplains.

Construction is scheduled for completion in 2021.

elaborated: Dobrawa Bies

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