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[Photos] Nha4 Architects Designs Flood-Proof Extension For Thai Hoa Home

Given the recent flooding in northern Vietnam, this “flood-proof” house extension seems like a smart addition for many Vietnamese families that face rising waters each rainy season.

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Nha4 Architects created this design for a retired couple and their son who lives in Thai Hoa, Nghe An Province where annual floodwaters can reach up to 150 centimeters. The work was commissioned as an add-on to the family’s existing dwelling so that they can live comfortably when the floods arrive.

The detached 70-square-meter structure sits next to the family’s main home and contains living room, two bedrooms, a bathroom and a prayer room.

"The existing house is without any protection," architect Nguyen Khac Phuoc told architecture website Dezeen. "In the past, the family had to live temporarily in a neighbourhood shelter when it flooded, so we raised this new building 150 centimetres above the ground."

Dezeen breaks down the various design elements that make the extension resistant to flooding and livable for its occupants:

Voids are cut into the front and side to provide small balconies. There is also a cantilevered concrete staircase on one facade that leads to a small patio, intended as a shaded buffer zone between the garden and the living room.

The patio has a hole cut through the floor to accommodate an existing tree on the site.

Inside, the extension has a slot window in the living room set at a low level to avoid harsh light and heat from the sun, and a curved corridor that leads to the bathroom and one of the bedrooms.

Ironwood flooring was added in a bid to make the interior feel cooler in summer and warmer in winter, and a bamboo screen was installed across the front facade, which can be drawn to provide privacy and shade.

"We chose these materials because they are locally available and widely used in the area," said Nguyen. "Limited budgets, local materials, and the context of a flood-prone environment informed the design."

It’s great to see more local architects pushing out designs that take into account environmental factors and small budgets (see also H&P’s award-winning bamboo homes).

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