Architect: Isay Weinfeld
Location: Vila Madalena, São Paulo, Brazil
Collaborator Architect: Domingos Pascali
Coordinator: Elena Scarabotolo
Team: Marcelo Alvarenga, Gabriel Bicudo, Felipe Hess, Marina Capocchi, Adriana Marcus
Building Completion: January 2011
Built Area: 5,838.96 sqm
Contractor: DP Unique
Structural Engineering: Steng Estrutural Engenhharia
Electrical and Pumbling Engineering: KML Engenharia E Projectos LTDA
Developer: Idea Zarvos
Photographs: Leonardo Finotti
W305 Building is located in Vila Madalena, an alternative and bohemian district in São Paulo’s West Side. For years, bars, restaurants, stores and art galleries have been setting up in the region, occupying and transforming the area’s still predominantly low-rise housing, and luring a young and modern crowd.
The idea of the client was to build a simple – yet charming as the district itself – office building in the L-shaped 1,120 sqm plot. Taking into consideration the shape and orientation of the land (North), we proposed a building made up of two articulated, yet quite distinct, volumes: the first, long, narrow and perpendicular to the street, is a “mass” cut by openings – sometimes windows, sometimes French windows – whose inside is sheltered from the excessive sunlight on the Eastern and Western facades; the other volume, removed from the street and with facades facing North, South and East, is moderately hit by sunlight and is completely encased in glass, on all faces.
On the ground floor there is a spacious lounge and a café surrounded by a garden, used exclusively by the tenants. Only 12 office units ranging from 80 to 250 sqm are distributed across the 8 floors, featuring 5.12m ceilings – the high ceiling gives clients the option to build up to 2 mezzanines per unit, or even another full floor, thus doubling the area of the unit. Terraces and step-out balconies further contribute to lend the spaces a cool, relaxed and casual setting. The modulated glass frames, the lay-out of the shafts, and the raised floors are other elements that provide the units with great flexibility and customization freedom. The building is completed by a top deck (used exclusively by the top-floor offices) and 3 underground parking floors, including a bicycle rack.
Plainness is one of the hallmarks of the project – it is found in the constructive materials (pre-molded concrete panels on the façade, galvanized steel/wood glass frames and wire mesh), in the lay-out of the units, in the common areas and, certainly, in the users whom we envisioned W305 Building for.