This neighborhood in Nanjing, China is full of beautifully weathered old stone homes, but one grey structure stands out from the rest. The Concrete Slit House from AZL Architects is a visually stunning piece of architecture: a bit of ultra-modern cast concrete in the middle of traditional masonry homes.
The structure was cast using five centimeter wood planks that give its exterior a deceptive woodgrain appearance. It appears to be ripped into two pieces right down the center and the void between filled with long windows that let in ample natural light and cross ventilation.
The three-story home extends below grade and can be accessed via a sunken courtyard. A wooden deck extends from the walls of the home to the outer edges of the property, giving just enough room for a thin line of greenery that partially masks the deck from surrounding homes.

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Inside, light wood and white walls give the home a sense of exaggerated space. Concrete elements extend indoors in select places, bringing in a slightly rougher aesthetic to offset the smooth, airy interior.