Split Level House by Qb


Design studio Qb of Philadelphia have completed a house in Philadelphia that features a glazed interior wrapped in a curved brick facade.

Called Split level House, the three-storey residence is located on the corner of two streets and is elevated just above street level.

The interior features bleached and blackened oak, polished concrete and steel.

A roof terrace is enclosed by the top of the brick skin.

Here's some more information from Qb:


Sited on a vacant corner in Philadelphia, this newly constructed house stitches itself into the neighborhood by responding to local cues.

Curved brick corners negotiate the irregular street grid, while the cadence of typical rowhouses and a palette of brick volumes and stone bases are translated into a new vocabulary.

A three story brick skin wraps the glass-lined interior, forming intimate exterior spaces where the two diverge.

An interior palette of bleached and blackened oak, polished concrete and patinaed steel contrast the rich wood, hammered concrete and brick of the exterior.

Floating just above the streetscape, the interior spaces wrap around the three-story glass entry, framing views out and back into the house. The brick skin shelters the interior and becomes the roof garden parapet, creating a sense of complete privacy.

Posted on Thursday January 7th 2010 at 1:24 am by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • Beautiful

  • prem

    exterior and interior with different concept. mild but could have been more balanced

  • Messiar

    Beautiful project! Very vibrant configuration of spaces and contrasts between solid and void.

  • Tyler

    From a preservation point of view, I love how it fits with the scale and mass of the surrounding buildings, yet remains contemporary. The interiors are spectacular, and that roof terrace is to die for. Excellent work!!

  • I love split level housing … great way to use minimal space

  • andy

    I can’t get over how much I’m digging this massing. Nice materials too. Harmony of int and ext could use some work, but whatev, it’s still a very nice little project.

  • BenBen

    The external treatment reminds me a bit of some of Steven Holl’s work. That doesn’t mean I don’t like it though! Nice work.

  • One of the best designs I’ve seen for the urban enviorment!

  • Nick

    Great design. That brick cuve is very sexy!

  • Beautiful house and needles to say, a massive contribution to the street.
    I love the sculptural shape and the right balance of the material. It is simple and yet has a warm and “homey” feeling.

    general note: I realy hope that one day the plans will be published in a readable size

  • Masie Brydson

    Visually it is less like a home and more like a working office & the bulky grey facade appears out of scale with the attached well proportioned brick town houses.

  • LOW

    That is just bite-the-back-of-your-hand gorgeous

  • DS

    Pseudo sectional perspective is quite enjoyable…

  • Very interesting! It made it likes there is lots more room, magic~

  • ADL


  • Jason

    The form and materials used seem to reduce the visual weight and massing of the grey masonry cladding. Very well done!

  • Q

    really nice, dezeen posted great projects this year, =)

  • @Masie I agree it is out of scale with the surrounding buildings. I would be in love with it if it were just the same height as everything around it! It fails at integrating with the neighborhood by being the center of attention, though maybe increased verticality is a necessity of future architecture?

  • Rutger

    The first photo and last photo is really good (great photographer), it seems the building does integrate with the surrounding building. The color of the wood matches the streetfacade. Then again I get totally distracted by the second-last picture, where there seems to be no coherence whatsoever and the building stands out as a massive object. Which is also the consequence of the harsh detailling.

  • EDA


  • yrag

    Beautiful! And in my own hometown!

    ADL, you write that you’ve walked past it for months.

    Where is it located?

    Initially, I thought Northern Liberties, by in photo five the distance to the Ben Franklin Bridge looks too far. Is it all the way up into North Philly?

  • sullka

    wow….remember seeing the renderings about 2 years ago, and now it's built…..nice.

  • Donna

    Love it, one reason I enjoy just walking through Nolibs whenever I’m in the area to shop.

  • Martin

    Who can tell me what is the address of this project please?