House No. 7
Avenidas Novas

This house belongs to the same family for 3 generations. At the western end of Avenidas Novas, it is a good testimony to a grid of dense urban blocks expanding over a rural territory punctuated by palaces – like the Palácio Marquês de Sá da Bandeira next door. The house was built in the 1930s and profoundly transformed in the 1980s – a time when built heritage was not exceedingly valued. Our client commissioned us to design the 3rd generation of the house: bigger and better articulated with the garden and the street.

The existing construction was well built, so we decided to keep it, raising its height to the cornice of the adjacent building. On closer examination of the main façade we recognized, with great surprise, the Art Deco features from the 1930s, so we speculated whether we could bring out the 3 eras of the house – 1930, 1980 and 2020 – simultaneously. We visited Florence during this process and found the solution in urban palaces extended, generation after generation, with a material and technical progression from robust – base – to slender – loggia – without mimicry or counterpoint. By superimposing the front elevations of the 1930s and 1980s we arrived at regulating lines that revive the uniqueness of each element within a coherent compositional structure. These lines contour the building, designing the gable, back façade, garden and studio. The continuity of horizontal lines allows the upper floors of the house to retreat, opening the garden to the Sun and the sky.

The house is entered through a covered outdoor space, from where the garden can be seen. The interior staircase appears as another entity which develops, unfolds and gradually fills the space.

We have explored the idea of multiple times in several projects, but never before has this exploration emerged so evidently as language.

Title House No. 7 — Avenidas Novas
Location Lisbon, Portugal
Built Area 510 m²
Site Area 245 m²
Conclusion In Progress
Team Vasco Matias Correia, Patrícia Ferreira de Sousa, Francisca Abrantes, Luciana Rodrigues, Inês Silva and Joana Valagão
Images Camarim