WIT Press

Innovation In The Current Floor Plan: Zoning In Blocks Of Flats For The Middle Class In The First Half Of The 20th Century


Free (open access)





Page Range

545 - 556




1,974 kb

Paper DOI



WIT Press


M. Bostenaru Dan


In Nouvelles Impressions d’Architecture, Libeskind (1998) writes "When architecture no longer deals with Space, all transactions, in which the container and the contained twisted together […] have come to an end". A systemic analysis can be performed morphologically, functionally or dynamically. The connection between the appearance and the generation of the form, human perception and experience, the processional nature of any system, is considered. The buildings of the Modern avant-garde were raised during a very short time span of 20 years, sometimes just 10 years, in several different parallel, coexisting styles, also coexisting with the newest developments in music, arts, physics, philosophy, economic and social theory and industrialization. One of the nuclei of the movement was built by the housing program, particularly suitable to foster innovation. While in more industrialized countries, ways to solve social problems were sought, in the other European countries the new possibilities were seen as an opportunity to give a more prosperous image to cities, by raising density with blocks of flats for the middle class. This study will concentrate on European features of building stock that have not been covered by previous studies, namely the spatio-functional research of the interior organization of the dwelling in the blocks of flats for the middle class. The study proposes a heterogeneous model in which a zone has a unique function instead of a unique vocation. Zoning results as a structural product in the superposition and interpenetration of textures (sub-systems of the life-frame elements able to respond to the functionally requested situation) of morphologic elements, thanks to the co-operation process of human activities. There is a complex zoning with operational and organizational value. The following case studies will be considered: Milan 1920–1940, Bucharest 1920–1940 and Athens 1919–1939; forerunners of and avant-garde in Budapest 1896–1939. Keywords: 20th century, housing, Bucharest, Athens, Milan, function, plan.


20th century, housing, Bucharest, Athens, Milan, function, plan