This land is called “Suan Maprao” (Coconut garden) because there were plenty of coconut trees in this area. The land plot is located on east side of the river, aligned with the old staircase that leads to Chiang Thong Temple on the top of the hill. This temple was built since Ayutthaya Era. The road between the site and the temple used to be a main circulation, in the time of water transportation. The temple used to face the river until there was land reclamation. It is possible that the land plot used to be a port for the temple.
Existing buildings in this community are1-2 storey high. Only Chiang Thong temple that is located up on the hill. When there was land reclamation, reclaimed land turned into private property. Some owners decided to maximize land use by constructing high-storey buildings with minimum set-back area. The old community was disparted from the river.
Designing “Baan Suan Maprao” started with the intention to respect existing context and provide benefits for people in the community. Instead of building with its maximum footprint, maximum height and facing backside to the attached properties, the building was placed in the middle, 2 stereys high, surrounded with green area. This green open space will not only provide good visual but it will be an access that connects the community with the river once again.
Lower floor will be public facilities such as restaurant, shops, co-working space and public walkway, while the upper floor and rooftop are for the hotel.
Baan Suan Maprao was designed with hope, that this method of site planning, together with its intention, will be an interesting guideline for new architecture in the future.