Yanbu Residential village
The residential units designed for employees of the Yanbu Cement Company express the radical commitment to research that underpins the philosophy and aesthetic logic of Studio65. The village, which faces out over the Red Sea, stretches across a well-defined landscape, so that the signs it leaves become an integral part of that landscape. Even if the architectural model encapsulates the repetitive nature of pre- fabricated solutions, it nevertheless succeeds in maintaining a sense of modulation and links up the individual elements in such a way as to imbue the entire complex with a sense of “serenity”. The equilibrium between technology and form, and the simple but detail-rich rendering of the prefabricated components in cement, together enabled the realization of a prestigious design for YCC and, above all, one that is comfortable for the employees’ families. Every villa and every apartment was allotted its own private garden. The design of the neighbourhood has a number of distinguishing features, such as the square, which serves as a meeting place. Located in the centre of the site, the square is its centre of gravity; it is easily accessible and is embellished by a basin of water at its centre. The salient element of this project is the simplicity of the forms, the content of which recalls Wittgenstein’s comments that “the limits of my language mean the limits of my world,” and “whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent”.