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Located on the foothills of Vitosha Mountain in Sofia, ACME is a residential complex consisting of three buildings accommodating eleven apartments. The architectural concept focuses on the design of the roofs, which merge seamlessly with the façades and are treated like a fifth façade.

Using the natural slope of the terrain, the architects have stepped the residential buildings as the shared garden cascades down the slope. Referencing the freestanding pitched-roof houses in the neighbourhood, E-Arch Studio Architects have articulated the roofs as symmetrical pitches. The wider building has a lower pitch than the two narrower building volumes. Though the forms differ slightly, the buildings clearly form an ensemble as their material treatment and detailing are identical. By seamlessly continuing the Swisspearl façade cladding as a roof covering, and eschewing an eaves overhang, the archetypal form of “house” has been abstracted and the scale of the houses visually reduced. The third-story windows merge into inclined roof skylights, thus emphasising the continuation of the upper floor with the roof.

While the upper two stories and roof are clad in Swiss pearl panels (Carat (R) for roof application), the lower two floors are clad in sienna-coloured masonry. The smooth, dark Swisspearl panels create a strong visual contrast with the russet textured brick façades. By recessing the façades on the end façades, intimate covered loggias have been created. Each apartment has a loggia that overlooks the surrounding garden landscape or Vitosha Mountain rising behind.

Generous planes of glazing break up the façade planes and floods the interior of the apartments with natural light. The reinforced concrete roof structure was protected first with a waterproof, thermal insulating layer and above covered with high performance Swisspearl fibre cement panels installed on aluminium profiles. Some of the positive attributes of Swisspearl panels include their high level of fire and frost resistance, and the ability for them to be recycled.

To find out more or to order a free sample, please contact facades@gb.swisspearl.com or visit www.swisspearl.com.