Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.
Day care and Elderly Residential Centre in Oeiras, Portugal by CVDB Arquitectos
January 10th, 2012 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: CVDB Arquitectos
The project is located between in an urban area with a residential neighbourhood mainly with social housing for low income families uphill and an area with various public buildings at the lower part of the valley. The elderly day centre is in between these rather different social, programmatic and physical realities, thus celebrating both its private and public character.
The building presents itself as a counterpoint to the architectural character of the existing housing neighbourhood and therefore it tries to establish s strong sense of architectural identity for the existing communities, through its particular coloured and textured materials. The 60 dwellings are set out in two rows facing east-west on four interconnected floors. The spatial sequences of the circulation and of the voids in the central area are part of a bioclimatic strategy which creates several meeting points for people to talk and allow vertical transparency between floors.
Conceptually this space will be sufficiently flexible to allow residents to come to feel at home in the place they live in. the ground floor is constructed by black slate volumes as a counterpoint to the transparent large glazed areas which accommodate the building’s social and most public spaces. On the outside, the private garden, which is a social meeting point of the inhabitants of the Centre, appears as if were a visual extension of the public space as it can be opened to the public as well. The building/garden seeks to fit in between the various urban tensions that are present in the landscape.
The Architecture practice CVDB ARQUITECTOS was founded by Cristina Veríssimo and Diogo Burnay in 1999. The studio work ranges from urban design projects to new buildings, from rehabilitation of old buildings to interior architecture or ephemeral structures. The studio is committed to develop a professional practice associated to architectural research, understanding each project as an open and participated field to all involved in the design process, exploring current design practices and building design methods that position architecture as part of a larger physical and cultural landscape and considering the individual’s experience and perception of urban spaces. The practice has had several national and international design awards, has been invited to lecture in Portugal, Spain, France, Argentina and the USA. Their work has been published and exhibited in several countries, such as Portugal, France, Netherlands, Romania, Spain, Mexico and China.
Cristina Veríssimo graduated in Architecture at the Faculdade de Arquitectura (FA-UTL) and has a Masters from the GSD, Harvard. She worked with João Luis Carrilho da Graça in Lisbon and with Zaha Hadid in London. She has been a jury and lectured in schools in Hong Kong, Europe, Argentina, USA, and currently teaches design studio at the Faculdade de Arquitectura in Lisbon.
Diogo Burnay graduated in Architecture at the Faculdade de Arquitectura (FA-UTL) and has a Masters from the Bartlett, London. He worked in Lisbon, London and Macau. He taught and lectured in schools in Hong Kong, Europe, was the Cass Gilbert Professor at CALA, University of Minnesota, 2002 and 2006, was the Ralph Hawkins professor at the School of Architecture of the University of Texas, Arlington, in the fall 2007 and currently teaches design studio at the Faculdade de Arquitectura in Lisbon.
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