The Interlace apartments, Singapore, by OMA/Ole Scheeren – high-end design that’s affordable

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The Interlace apartments feature stacked building blocks in an hexagonal pattern, and offers affordable housing in Singapore

With its 31 stacked blocks and hexagonal plan, The Interlace is far from standard tower block design Trends editorial director Paul Taylor looks at this dramatic design by OMA/Ole Scheeren

When it comes to design, the word unique is one that is so overused these days that it’s started to lose its value.

However, I’ve got no hesitation using unique to describe the project we’re looking at here – it’s The Interlace … a CapitaLand development in Singapore.

Firstly, there’s the underlying philosophy behind the project – that high end residential projects by world renowned architectural firms should be accessible to a wide range of people … and not just an elite few.

And then there’s the design itself … by Ole Scheeren for distinguished international firm OMA.

This is no standard response to multi-residential projects which usually result in a huddle of separate high-rise towers. Instead, Scheeren has arranged 31 stacked blocks in a spectacular hexagonal pattern on the eight hectare siite.

Each of these blocks is six storeys high – with a maximum height reaching up to 24 storeys – to provide apartments for 1000 households.

These interlocking blocks resemble a vertical village, complete with cascading sky gardens … and both public and private roof terraces.

But for Scheeren, the design is as much about the open spaces created between the blocks as the dramatic effect of stacking them.

Not only do the openings help maximize the views for residents and allow light and breezes to penetrate, they also create sky gardens for outdoor living.

Together with the eight themed courtyards and children’s playgrounds, the sky gardens contribute to another underlying concept of The Interlace – to encourage a sense of community and multi-generational interaction for its residents.

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