Located in Talad Noi district in Bangkok, at a corner where two meandering alleys meet, three-row houses down from a local Chinese shrine, stands the new Creative Crews office. The project involves the adaptation of two adjoining row houses into a new workplace and base for the crews.
Talad Noi is a heritage district with intimate urban scale. The tectonic comprises of and its most notable typology; the row house, small walkable alleys network, and generous scatter of street vendors. Planning rules and regulations have hindered high rise developments and densification. Recent development has been limited to use change of row houses from traditional craft and trade to hostels and cafes. However, renovation needn’t be limited to these uses. The row house typology is truly versatile.
The altered building is split into two halves, with formal functions on the air-conditioned south side, circulation and supporting facilities on the naturally ventilated north side. The 1st and 2nd floor are retail spaces for let. A flexible meeting spaces on the 3rd floor is both rented out to the public and utilized by CC Staff with an adjoining double volume, semi-outdoor courtyard used for public functions. The white cheese wood tree provides shade for those utilizing the grill for BBQ parties. Having green on the premise helps to increase and contribute to the overall limited greenery of the neighborhood. The 4th, 5th and 6th floor are offices. The top floor house dormitories for staff and has a sizable terrace home to a table tennis table and a monkey bar. Pantries can be found on the 3rd 5th and 7th floor.
The existing building had numerous occupants previously; each have made their own impressions on the building. Each alterations and marks hold memories which has built up overtime. All the original finishes were left intact and new additions are treated as new layers which distinguishes itself from the existing via raw materiality and finish. To maximize circulation, the existing reinforced concrete staircase was removed, and a new steel dogleg was inserted.
To celebrate the spirit of the area, local elements such as the scissors gate line the stairwell which serves as a flexible partition. Traces on the adjoining walls are left un-rendered to serve as reminders of the original staircase. Crayon drawing of a sunny day at a faraway island from the previous occupant is preserved and now serve as a rejuvenating sight for the architects on the fourth floor. The completed building recognizes and preserve multi-layered history embedded within the building essence and differentiate additions to allow the continuation of this building timeline, whilst efficiently organizes new spaces to serve new functions. A sensitive approach with brute, edgy and raw result. It also exhibits the versatility of the row house typology to accommodate a variety of uses.