Tag Archives: adaptive reuse



Maarten Baas’ design studio outside Eindhoven is a pleasantly respectful conversion of a livestock barn.  It retains the basic elements that are often lost in barn adaptations- massing (that jerkinhead roof!), materials (brick and tile!), and–most critically–openings.  Most of the bad barn reuses that we encounter struggle to bring in light for the needs of humans without puncturing the walls and roof in insensitive ways.

via www.dezeen.com

Here they’ve kept the stable windows and entrances and maintained the hay door, which seems fundamental and simple but is frequently botched.  More creatively, though, they’ve solved the problem of lighting the hayloft by introducing a ribbon of skylights that spans nearly the length of the roof.  This simple choice has the dual effect of stressing the horizontality of the barn and maintaining a flat roof plane, impressions that are lost when dormers are used.  Most barn conversions are jarring because the existing form is defined by broad, flat surfaces.  When accommodations for new uses are made, the new elements can’t be hidden amongst a jumble of existing details.  A flush string of lights is an elegant design solution.  I’m not sure about the long-term maintenance though…

The whole article is short and worth a read.  Check out the grandfather/grandmother clocks!