Dezeen Magazine

The home has a brick exterior

OYO Architects positions spiral staircase at the heart of brick and concrete House Dede

OYO Architects has completed a house on the site of an old barn in Drongen, Belgium, featuring a cross-shaped plan with a spiral staircase at its centre.

Local studio OYO Architects was approached to design a family home for a rural plot in Drongen, which is a district within the city of Ghent.

Brick and concrete was used across the exterior of House Dede to create texture
Top: the home sits within a grassy plot. Above: House Dede has a brick and board-marked concrete exterior

House Dede replaces a derelict barn and seeks to retain a visual connection to the original building's form and materials, as well as optimising views of the natural surroundings.

"The brick volume on top is reminiscent of the former barn volume, while the ground floor organically opens up towards the garden, creating both framed views and cosy corners," OYO Architects said.

Geometric shaped paving covers the floor of the garden at House Dede
Floor-to-ceiling windows line the ground floor

The building makes use of materials salvaged from the old barn, including the red bricks used to construct the upper storey. The architects claimed that the recycled bricks help to retain "a natural authenticity and 'spirit' from the site."

The house's plan overlays the footprint of the original barn and is extended through the addition of an intersecting single-storey volume oriented at 45 degrees to the main structure.

A wooden spiral staircase is located at the centre of House Dede
Board-marked concrete covers the interis walls and ceiling of the house

The extension allowed the architects to incorporate private spaces including a home office alongside a large, open-plan kitchen, dining and living area on the ground floor.

The building's lower storey is constructed from board-marked concrete that helps to unite the intersecting volumes. Large windows and sliding doors set into the concrete walls enhance the connection with the gardens.

At the centre of the house, where the two wings intersect, the spiral staircase extends through a circular hole punched into the concrete ceiling.

Throughout the interior, concrete surfaces are left exposed and combined with wood to create what the architects described as a "stripped back, naturalistic atmosphere."

Wood panels line the walls of House Dede's kitchen
The kitchen has an angular terrazzo-topped island

A kitchen situated at one end of the main living area features an angular island unit shaped to follow the line of the extensions on either side.

A wall of wood-fronted units incorporates a cooker and worktop area that can be hidden from view when not in use.

The upper storey contains the main bedroom and three single bedrooms featuring sliding walls that can be pushed back to turn the entire space into a large play area.

House Dede pictured at dusk
Light angular paving leads to the entrance of the home

OYO Architects was established in 2011 by Eddy Soete, Nigel Jooren, Veroniek Vanhaecke and Lies Willaert. The team now numbers 35 people working on multidisciplinary projects across Europe and Africa.

The studio's previous works include a wedge-shaped house with a sloping green roof and a concrete extension to a house in a former post office that is designed to function as a standalone residence.

Photography is by Tim Van de Velde.

More images and plans

Ground floor plan
First floor plan of the home
The home is nestled within plant life
A concealed door leads into the home
Glazed walls reflect greenery
The interior has an open plan design
The staircase has a warm wood finish
The balustrade curves and winds
The staircase has terrazzo steps
The bathroom has a dark finish