Fun House is a project designed by Atelier RZLBD. The house, despite being so distinguished from its neighbors, blends into its surrounding so harmoniously. Its simple, rectangular façade with a long horizontal strip of windows on the second floor only mimics the gentle curve of the street in the front and remains crude and frugal in the rest of its details. Behind its unobtrusive and unimposing presence, however, it engages with the peculiar site and clients so energetically. Like a child who can play anywhere with anything, the Fun House discovers playfulness in the two and conceives a playground that belongs to both. Photography by Borzu Talaie.
At the intersection of the two perpendicular corridors on the first floor, a double-height space with the stair benches facing the ravine acts as an agora. At this gathering point, the boundaries between the second floor and the first, the ravine and the house, the public and the private are obscured, allowing one to perceive the entire house and the nature simultaneously. In more intimate moments, playground elements are introduced to suggest multiple itineraries between spaces. Underneath the agora, a wide sliding floor connects the first floor to the basement, transitioning one emotionally to where one can practice many active hobbies. At the corner of the study room on the second floor, a firepole offers a secretive shortcut to the mud/locker room and the adjacent side entrance on the first floor.
Amongst the typical Torontonian houses that lack any sort of interaction with the site and/or the inhabitants, the Fun House realizes playful coexistence between the two. It demonstrates to its adjacent neighborhoods and beyond that a good architecture does not simply occupy but becomes part of and contribute to what was existing.
Architect: Atelier RZLBD
Project Lead: Reza Aliabadi
Project team: Bahar Joshan, Sebastien Beauregard
Structure: ADA Engineering
Mechanical: Lopet Technologies LTD
Construction Management: Maxamin Homes
Architectural Photography: Borzu Talaie
Location: Ontario, Toronto, East York
Basics: Two-storey wood & steel structure
Lot: 25500 sqft / 2370 m2
Living Area (GFA): 4200 sqft / 390 m2
Completion: Fall 2019