This project of rehabilitation of a barn for seven apartments, work of the studio bernath + widmer, is located in near the small medieval town of Murten.
It is the largest barn in the Bernese canton of its time.
The project starts under the premise of converting this old barn into seven apartments of different sizes.
These apartments were built in the powerful structure of the empty barn according to the standards of historical preservation.
The new volume inserted into the existing space is virtually separated from the protected structure, with only a few connection points between them.
The functional versatility of the old agricultural building is reflected in the typology of the new apartments.
The arrangement of the apartments continues with the vertical order and are separated from each other by brick walls.
The transverse walls of the seven apartments are also organized with the spacing of the horizontal beams of the roof and the heights of the supports of the existing wooden frame.
Inside, the apartments have a very versatile distribution, where a package located in the center of the floor organizes the space and solves the service parts of the same.
Inside these elements we find the bathroom, the kitchen and the staircase that connects the floors of the seven apartments.
The material used in the intervention is basically the wood, which is used in a very accurate way, valuing the existing building but leaving the restoration patented.
The interior spaces play with the light that crosses the frame that covered the old barn, generating spaces that confuse the interior with the exterior and producing cross visions between the inside and outside and the different levels of the project.
When the spaces are treated with a material as natural as wood, a very cozy atmosphere is generated.
The exterior view of the whole is hardly altered since it maintains the image of an agricultural building that is inserted with the elements that it has around it.
Photography: Roland Bernath