A modern house, encompassing the soul of traditional Sylheti house pattern, Kulaura House has achieved a transition between generations. Constructed in Kulaura, Moulvibazar in 2020, the 4338 sqft native abode for an immigrant family, was designed by the architecture firm Formosis under Architect Murshed Ahmed and his associates. The objective was to create a comfortable haven that not only stitches generations together with memories made but also connects them with their roots, the surrounding environment, and its people.
The six-bedroom residence with required amenities was built on a site of five adjacent plots, owned jointly by five brothers. Only one plot was allotted for the residence, with very little possibility of any other building on the rest, as the family mostly stays abroad. Upon the advice of the architect, the middle plot was chosen for the built area and the front and back yard at east and west was left for landscape and garden that would act as screening against the sun. Use of brick and cement blends with the surrounding along with the plastered portion, adding vibrance and protection from moisture. The large glass panels close the distance between the interior spaces and outdoor greenery.
The formal entrance forms a nave between the seating and parking area while the landscape stairs lead to the casual entrance. Inspired by the common practice of vernacular houses in Sylhet, the residence is segmented into Bara/Puber ghor- the public space, Kanir Kotha- the common space, and Bhitror Kotha- the private space. The projecting L-shaped verandah, inspired by Dair, of the public space, looks towards the front yard. A semi-enclosed court acts as a buffer between the seating areas and bedrooms so that the inhabitants can interact and socialize, simultaneously maintaining adequate privacy. Similarly, another court, that visually connects the front and back yard, is attached to the dining area- the common space which brings together both the public and private zone. The double-height space attached to the bedrooms is a regular interactive living area for the family members along with the spacious roof, accessible from the first floor that accommodates the family gatherings and outdoor programs. With reference to the decorative string of village weddings, pergolas are placed overhead which gives a sense of sheltered space, with a scaled-down enclosure but with the same energy of the outdoors. Kulaura House strives to be called home by the family growing up abroad but is rooted in their homeland.
The architecture team designed a space that would cherish the moments spent and memories made and would welcome the family warmly each time with all proper privacy, amenities, and ambience.
This home is the string between the future generation and their forefathers that would encourage them back to their roots.
Murshed Ahmed, the principal architect of the project, was a student of Shahjalal University of Science and Technology and started his architecture firm Formosis with his partners in 2015. Currently pursuing MSc in Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Sheffield in the UK, the architect is a great admirer of Geoffrey Bawa, Marcio Kogan, and Emre Arolat and was inspired by the views of Architect Bashirul Haq during his Internship. The Kulaura House took its form by Murshed Ahmed and his team- Architect Khayer Ahmed, Architect Md. Istiak Tanvir and Structural Engineer: Md. Mustafizur Rahman and they succeeded in their design objective of staying rooted in the traditions of the homeland without compromising the standard of the present time and bringing generations of family together.
Photography by Al Amin Abu Ahmed Ashraf ( Dolon )