Bloc_10 is a multi-family housing project that strives to reimagine and reinvent the market-driven condominium. It is situated on the site of a former gas station in Winnipeg’s River Heights neighbourhood.
The client wanted a modestly priced building designed and constructed within 12 months. The resulting $2 million three-storey, 10-unit (12,000 square feet) condominium project was modelled after the ‘white-box’ concept: each buyer purchases an unfinished unit with basic plumbing, heating and electrical systems. Buyers can decide which rooms they would like distributed on each level and they can personalise their finishes to their own taste and budget.
All of the units (sized between 900 and 1,300 square feet) rise over three levels and most have two balconies. As the apartments ascend, they cross from one side of the building to the other, resulting in 10 unique, interlocking layouts that feel like a hybrid between a condominium and a house. This arrangement provides views to the north and the south, and eight of the 10 apartments have views in three directions.
To take advantage of the maximum allowable mass for the development, cantilevered projections expand rooms, create balconies and provide support for the wooden, vertical-slat privacy screen that wraps the building’s exterior. The screen serves many purposes: It provides each homeowner with privacy and shade and yet by offering glimpses of neighbours, it also encourages community. The screen’s slats filter views of the surroundings, playfully drawing the city into Bloc_10’s expression. The screen’s sheer texture and kinetic spirit unify the facade and give Bloc_10 a distinctive identity within the city.
Recognition and Awards
- 2012 Emerging Architecture Award, Architectural Review
- 2012 World Architecture Festival Awards, Shortlist
- 2012 Prairie Wood Design Awards, Winner
- 2012 Governor General's Medal in Architecture
- 10 unique, interlocking layouts
- Cantilevered projections
- Vertical-slat privacy screen wraps exterior