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Apartment in Príncipe Real

Lisbon, Portugal

2015 – …

A single apartment can be made of how many layers?

Over time, a space adjusts to its inhabitants, to their lives and needs. It mirrors their experiences and adapts to the constructive possibilities of each period in a continuous process of multiple appropriations.

 

This project clearly shows what is easily overlooked: that this kind of operation is part of a process of iterations, where subtraction is as strong a gesture as addition. Intervening in this apartment starts from the understanding that it is not so much about adding another layer to the one existent, and already thick, but to allow to rethink and question the importance of each layer.

 

Consequently, it consolidates the dialogue between what is added and what already existed, between what were the needs of other times and the present desires, the old construction techniques and current ones.

Over time, a space adjusts to its inhabitants, to their lives and needs. It mirrors their experiences and adapts to the constructive possibilities of each period in a continuous process of multiple appropriations.
This project clearly shows what is easily overlooked: that this kind of operation is part of a process of iterations, where subtraction is as strong a gesture as addition. Thus, the project’s first action consists of cleansing, by discovering the ceiling behind the false ceiling, the original floor under the current one, removing layers upon layers of coatings from the bathroom and opening up the balcony over the lightwell. All of this allowing the apartment to gain more light, a higher ceiling and more space.

The project’s scale then goes to greater detail. The program is redistributed with the rooms now occupying the front of the apartment, overlooking the trees in the garden, and the living room on the back, with a view over the river. The kitchen is expanded, enhancing its connection to the living room, a new bathroom is created, combining it with a closet, new wardrobes are added, the connections to the long corridor are redesigned and the rooms’ areas are balanced.

Intervening in this apartment starts from the understanding that it is not so much about adding another layer to the one existent, and already thick, but to allow to rethink and question the importance of each layer.
Consequently, it consolidates the dialogue between what is added and what already existed, between what were the needs of other times and the present desires, the old construction techniques and current ones. This way, the project grows while being aware of its importance as another key moment in the history of this apartment. Without shyness nor hesitation, the proposed solution is to move forwards.

Project Apartment in Princípe Real

Location Lisbon, Portugal

Client Private

Program Apartment refurbishment

Area 110 m2

Project status In construction

Date 2015 – …

Architecture Aurora Arquitectos

Architecture team Sérgio Antunes, Sofia Reis Couto, Pedro França, Bruno Pereira, Tânia Sousa

Engineering JSJ and ECWS

Construction AMA

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