the Window House by FORMZERO

Concrete shell creates intimacy between architecture and nature

Project Specs


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Appreciation towards FORMZERO for providing the following description:

FORMZERO建筑事务所在马来西亚森林的边缘地带设计建造了窗屋,该设计实现了让房子和森林之间形成一种更亲密的关系,同时满足客户的要求,最大化房子内部的空间使用,建筑师Cherng Yih Lee由此提出了两种截然不同的设计考虑。

Located on the edges of a Malaysian forest, architecture firm FORMZERO sets an objective to develop a more intimate relationship between the house and the forest when creating the Window House. While the client’s brief is to maximise the space inside the house, this situation gives the architect Cherng Yih Lee two contrasting considerations for the design.

▼鸟瞰图,aerial view


A concrete shell, as the key feature of the building, wraps the house from east to west. This shell serves two purposes, it is an additional layer of thermal insulation while also offering an added degree of privacy for the owners. The shell is shaped in a telescopic form, tapered at the front and opened up to frame the views of the forest at the rear of the house.

▼混凝土外壳从东到西包裹着整个建筑,a concrete shell wraps the house from east to west

▼临街建筑立面,street facade

▼混凝土外壳立面,the concrete shell facade


The concept of The Window House starts with two fundamental questions.This project led by architect Cherng Yih Lee of FORMZERO is sited right on the edge of a reserved tropical forest. The first immediate responses by the architect was to develop a seamless relationship between the house and the nature. “What if, on the contrary, the house owner has expressed no interest in the outdoor space or the nature but rather maximising the interior volume as part of the main design brief? FORMZERO decided to transform this paradoxical situation into an inspirational thought.

▼具有隔热层作用的混凝土穿孔外壳,concrete perforated enclosure with insulating layer function

▼建筑面向街道方向的开窗,the windows facing the street

窗户可能是界定我们与室外空间关系的最直接的元素。当一所房子被其他房子包围时,这种关系将会随着窗帘的落下而消失。因此,Cherng Yih 提出“我们如何在不损害隐私的前提下,保持与户外空间的联系呢?”为了解答这些问题,窗屋的设计理念是脱离三种基本构造方式,并通过对窗户的形式和功能的操控来加强居住者与现有环境间的联系,并且实现房屋的设计构想。

Window is probably the most direct element that defines our relationship with the outdoor space. When a house is surrounded by other houses, such relationship is immediately disjoined by just dropping down a curtain. “How can we restore such relationship with the outdoor space without compromising our privacy?” Cherng Yih adds.To answer these questions, the design concept of The Window House departed with three tectonic approaches through the manipulation of the form and function of window. By doing so, the ultimate aim of this project is to strengthen the house owner’s bonding with the existing context without diluting the design brief.

▼混凝土外壳与内部建筑形成的空间,the space between the concrete shell and the core of the building

▼建筑的窗户让房子和森林之间形成一种更亲密的关系,windows develop a more intimate relationship between the house and the forest

▼一个个巨大的窗框,透过其中欣赏森林美景, a giant window frame to look out to the forest

▼混凝土外壳创造与自然相融的景观,the concrete shell creates a landscape that is blended with nature.





From east to west, this house is wrapped in an additional layer of perforated concrete wall which appears like a shell. Apart from acting as a thermal protection with cross ventilation, the shell is the first layer to control the privacy. Between the house and the concrete shell, multi-level of landscape is inserted in order to create an ambiguous condition which makes the landscape to appear more like an indoor space.

▼混凝土外壳与室内客厅相结合,the combination of concrete shell and indoor living room

▼可欣赏户外自然的起居室,the lounge with the outdoor view

▼与户外景观相融合的厨房和餐厅,kitchen and dining room integrated with outdoor landscape

▼混凝土外壳保护业主卫生间的隐私,concrete shell protects owners’ bathroom privacy

▼木条接合构成的建筑入口,the entrance with wood




The concrete shell is shaped in a telescopic form. It is tapered at the front, widened towards the forest in both plan and section, like creating a giant window frame to look out to the forest. At the same time the tapered front facade is projected to the street that creates a more human scale house.

▼钢架结构与玻璃结合的楼梯,staircase with steel frame and glass

▼钢架细节,the detail of the steel frame

▼建筑中木质结构楼梯,wooden staircase in building

▼混凝土结构楼梯间,the concrete staircase




Rooms with different functions deserve different windows. To create specific viewing experience for each room, the proportion and the position of each window on the north and south facade are derived out of the function of each room. Instead of imposing an arbitrary aesthetic, the facade therefore becomes a collective expression of each room. In addition to enhancing the quality of framing view, the windows are outlined with deepened eaves, every scenery is captured in a picture frame.

▼石质与钢结合的院子入口,courtyard entrance with stone and steel

▼入口构造细节,the detail of the entrance

▼概念模型,the model of the concept

▼概念手绘,the sketch of the concept

▼场地平面图,site plan

▼底层平面图,the ground floor plan



Project Name: Window House 窗屋
Office: FORMZERO 建筑无型
Lead architect: Cherng Yih Lee 李诚毅
Construction Year: 2015
Completion Year: 2017
Typology / use: Residential
Land area: 813m2
Built Area: 900m2
Project location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Photographer: Ronson Lee from Twins Photography
Contractor: Jaya Bintang
Structure engineer: Perunding Ecorake + Bubbledeck Construction
Interior design: FORMZERO + Jaya Bintang

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