Structural Engineer: Jorge Martín
Quantity Surveyor: Rafael Jaume
Budget: 177,101 EUR
The family home in in Maria de la Salut, Mallorca, Spain, is located in the transition area between the urban fabric and the countryside, added onto the end of a row of traditional houses. The long plot, between parallel neighbor side walls, is oriented on a North-South axis facing two streets with a 2m level difference.
The urban growth in this area preserves the usual structure of the town centre, it means, compact blocks with buildings aligned to the street creating an inner courtyard in the block. Houses create characteristic streetscape of small street-facing windows and painted wooden blinds.
We decided to build the house as a compact volume facing the street on the north side. That made possible to preserve the existing trees and use a big part of the plot as a South-oriented garden. We took also into detailed consideration the relation of the project with the urban fabric, the neighbor volumes and the way they relate to the street. The house matches the height of its neighbor on one side and raises an extra half-storey on the other, where it borders an empty plot at a higher level.
The characteristic streetscape of the area is put in value using a careful layout of small window openings in combination with exterior sliding wooden blinds. This combination creates a dynamic facade while transforming the size and texture of the window openings. To compensate for the small windows, the use of big façade openings and a fragmented volume towards the inner courtyard reflects the search of light and fresh air. A large skylight lets natural light down onto the upper storey, while a void in the first floor lets it through to the ground floor.
Split levels divide the main rooms on both floors creating a fluid interior space that also corresponds with the site that slopes upwards towards a second street at the back. Steel beams and ceramic sheathing are left exposed on the ceilings, while glass screens provide banisters for staircases and balconies.
The project was selected in the “Context” Section of Catalunya-Illes Balears Pavilion in the 2012 Venize Biennale.