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Sophie Delhay's units

The most creative typology

Research, an exploratory method, risk taking: a typological innovation is never done alone. It requires a taste for adventure, a vision and tenacity. Against regulatory and normative expectations, against the standardization that brings us down, developing a creative typology is always a challenge. Breaking down the eternal day/night partition of housing, changing the idea that a bedroom is only a bedroom and a living room is a living room and nothing more, in short, tearing apart housing projects to question spaces' eternal function is the challenge successfully taken up by Sophie Delhay. She would never have succeeded without the full support of her client, Grand Dijon Habitat, nor permanent iterations with the managers, those who bring this built heritage to life over the decades. This project resulting from a negotiated market, escaping from usual architectural competitions, demonstrates that the only valid criterion in housing isn't status nor size, but its configuration: alone or in groups? Each room in the accommodations of Sophie Delhay's residence offers this dual experience of scale and number, and each accommodation offers its inhabitants domesticity as well as urbanity, openness as well as intimacy. Exemplary in its typology and tremendously libertarian, this project becomes a manifest of the new question that should occupy the stakeholders of housing: with whom do we live? Photos: Bertrand Verney