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Homestead near Wolsztyn in a new look. House designed by AMJ studio

Dobrawa Bies
29 of November '21
Technical data
Name: ADA_01
Investor: private
Location: Poland, Adamowo, Greater Poland voivodship.
Studio: AMJ studio
Architects: Adam Jankowski, Marek Jankowski, Kamil Paszek
Construction: Danuta Dębska
Sanitary installations: Jacek Mróz
Electrical installations: Artur Worsztynowicz
Usable area: 184,52 m²


  • project
  • implementation

2021 -

ADA_01 is a project for the reconstruction and expansion of a small homestead near Wolsztyn in the Greater Poland province. The main idea of the project by AMJ studio was to preserve the distinctive architectural features of the historic house and farm building. The modern blocks added to them introduce new functions, standing out against the background of traditional rural buildings.

Zagroda pod Wolsztynem
w nowej odsłonie

The architects tried to combine modern architecture with the old

© AMJ studio

Dobrawa Bies: The ADA_01 project is a new version of a small homestead near Wolsztyn. You added new blocks to the old buildings, but in such a way as not to interfere with the historic shape and layout of the buildings. Why such a decision?

AMJ studio: We tried to emphasize the combination of modern architecture with the original fabric in such a way that the division was clearly distinguishable. Therefore, the main dimensions of the buildings, the divisions of the elevations, the dimensions of the window openings did not change. However, the parts "added" to the historic blocks have changed - the glass dining room open to the garden and the canopy of the entrance part. Why such a decision? First of all, we wanted to respond to the needs of investors in this way, provide functional facilitation and modernize the house, while not losing the character of the existing homestead, which captivated us with its universal simplicity. As a result, the building opened up to the surroundings, gained a convenient entrance from the street - in a word, it received the amenities that our clients dreamed of.

Zagroda pod
Wolsztynem, plan zagospodarowania

On the plot there is a single-family house and an outbuilding, converted into a garage

© AMJ studio

Dobrawa: What idea did the investors come to you with?

AMJ studio: The investors came to us with guidelines of a purely functional nature. They initially just wanted to modernize the building and transform its interiors, adapting them to modern lifestyles and new requirements in construction. They also had concerns about the property itself, whose technical condition did not seem to be the best. The inventory performed allowed us to assess the condition of the building. It turned out that its structural layout allows for a wide range of changes. Inspired by the charming homestead, we saw opportunities to create a place with special spatial and stylistic qualities.

Zagroda pod Wolsztynem, stan
aktualny domu

the house before the changes

photo: AMJ studio

There was a vision to carry out remodeling and expansion of the house, more interference with its external form. We directed investors in such a direction, showing the great potential of the investment, which was met with great enthusiasm - then we proceeded to create our concept.

Dom po zmianach,
przeszklona kuchnia

The house after the changes, glazed kitchen

© AMJ studio

Dobrawa: The interior of the house underwent considerable transformations, you even moved the entrance to the building. Tell us about these changes. What materials did you use?

AMJ studio: The amphilad layout of the rooms, the tiled stoves, the steep wooden staircase - these are elements we wanted to eliminate, replacing them with proper zoning of the space. Many sketches made and discussions directed us towards opening up the living space of the house on the first floor and adapting the unused attic into a night zone. Subsequent changes necessitated moving the main entrance closer to the road, signaling the need to roof it. The dream of large glazing and daylight dictated the location of a glass cubicle with a dining room, which opened the house to the courtyard.

Zagroda pod
Wolsztynem, rzut parteru

Homestead near Wolsztyn, first floor plan

© AMJ studio

As for the materials we used - they were mainly new type of thermal and moisture insulation. The object, because of the times in which it was built, required a lot of interference in the layout of the layers of the external partitions, so as to meet the modern technical conditions to which the buildings and their location should correspond. The walls of the buildings were covered with a layer of mineral wool with high thermal insulation, the foundations of the object required the injection of appropriate preservatives so as to reduce the moisture in the walls.

Zagroda pod
Wolsztynem, stan aktualny

The site includes an outbuilding and a house

© AMJ studio

In the detailed design, we also used new layers for the roof, which had to be as light as possible due to the preservation of the existing roof truss. Hence the decision to use flat sheet laid on a standing seam, which is characterized by ease of processing and light weight compared to ceramic tiles. We designed the new additions to the homestead using steel structures and glass - so that they would become lightweight and stand out from the brick structure of the country house.

Zagroda pod Wolsztynem
po przebudowie

The object, due to its condition, required considerable intervention in the construction as well

© AMJ studio

Dobrawa: Does such a remodeling require more work than a project built "from scratch"? What difficulties did you encounter?

AMJ studio: Definitely yes. First of all, when working on old buildings, it is crucial to understand their structure, how the structure works. That's why a meticulously done inventory of the whole is so important. Only this as a starting point gives a complete picture and sets guidelines for us as designers. It also requires greater sensitivity to the space to be able to properly respect the existing architecture. In the case of buildings erected "from scratch," there are certainly not so many restrictions at the outset. However, we believe that it is precisely these limitations that drive us to look for interesting solutions and innovations, reconciling the "old" with the "new."

Zagroda w nowej
odsłonie, dom jednorodzinny

The new elements were designed with steel structures and glass

© AMJ studio

The main difficulties we encountered were primarily related to changes in the structure of the building. The wooden ceiling beams often required reinforcement and the introduction of replacements - also to move the location of the stairs. The same was true of the roof trusses - new layers of the partition were needed, as well as the installation of slope windows to light the attic. Another major problem was to protect the building from moisture and deal with thermal bridges. This is an aspect that is always a challenge when upgrading buildings that are more than half a century old. Added to this is the need to upgrade all the installations in the building. Working with a team of tradesmen at the technical design stage allowed us to introduce an underfloor heating system and mechanical ventilation with recuperation to make the building more comfortable.

Dobrawa: Thank you for the interview.

Dobrawa Bies

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