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Le Corbusiers Five Points

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In 1926, Le Corbusier introduced his five points of architecture, which he had been developing throughout the 1920s; the first of these five points was the use of pilotis (concrete columns which support the building above ground). In Villa Savoye, Le Corbusier uses all of his five points to develop this house including the pilotis and they serve an important function. Of there functions is how they free a space below the building allowing spatial and formal flexibility and increasing the area for circulation and services in the small available area also increasing the green area. In Villa Savoye the increased area for circulation was used as a route for cars where cars driven by chauffeurs could be driven directly to the door and then into parking area and this increased the used area under the house instead of using the space around it. Aesthetically the pilotis also gave a sense of floating and lightness to the architecture itself, which helped, as it would have looked heavy and unappealing as a large cube. They also free up the view so the persons sight is not channeled between the buildings but right beneath the dwellings. Le Corbusier describes in this book “ Towards A New Architecture” from pages 52-61 the “ City Of Towers” which uses the pilotis on a large scale, where they do not hold up a small mass such as a building but a large mass such as whole cities. The circulation space, which was used for cars and other services below the buildings, now serves as an area for pipes and trucks below the city, which helps the flow of the city and those living in it. This division would allow the fast pace of the city on stop to continue without interruption and the residents to live calmly. The pilotis of Corbusier has influenced other buildings such as The Homewood house in Esher, Surrey, England by architect Patrick Gwynne and The west wing of the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies in Canberra designed by Ashton Raggatt McDougall, is almost an exact replica of villa savoy but instead of white façade it has a black one which makes it appear as a shadow of the building. Therefore we see how Corbusier’s use of the pilotis has affected modern architecture and create new ways to use space and make a building more aesthetically pleasing to the eye.
Reference:
Le Corbusier, Towards A New Architecture, The Architectural Press (London, 1982)
By: Youssef Berjaoui

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