Construction: MKS EMPREENDIMENTOS
Electric Installation: T. Peres Instalações
Text description provided by the architects. A residential avenue, built on lot 279 America Avenue, quiet and very green, the building Casa America is located in a mixed-used neighborhood in the city of Porto Alegre.
The program was largely developed due to the extremely small dimensions of the land, with only seven meters and seventy of frontage by thirty meters of depth, causing the structure of the building addorsed the two boundaries, and thus creating two large blind gables. The resulting lack of side windows also made two apartments delimited per floor, separated by a light well, avoiding large linear extensions without natural lighting and ventilation in a single unit. Another required condition resulting from the blind gables was to extend the full length of the facades, using frames in large format and railings in clear laminated glass. This frontal amplitude, beyond the scope to offset the deficit caused by the gables, It was also designed in a way that allows a better framework of the arboreal area from the resident’s perspective, thusly to find luxury in such a way of insight in nature, and not in ornamental exhibition.
Casa America is a scaled-down building, but humane, loaded with sensoriality both externally and internally. The building has a reduced condominial area, with six floors where there are parking spaces, it also comes with a rooftop common area on the last floor and six residential units. These are divided by three types of typologies, with areas ranging between 72 and 115 square meters of private area and plants that allow different possibilities of internal layouts, it comes with just a bathroom and a toilet built internally. This choice is aimed to give its residents freedom to choose their apartment space, whether its internal layout, the number of bedrooms, or the dimensions of each environment, thus reflecting their life styles.
The project aims to respect the importance of the condominial areas on our daily routine, such areas often overlooked from the architectural point of view, and which comprises an important transition zone between the urban chaos and the coziness of our home. For this purpose we created the same sensorial identity starting from the facade throughout the condominial areas, garage, free movement access to the apartments and the vegetated rooftop terrace, using organic materiality with warm colors and artistic interventions to create energetic and warm intimacy. This energy created is intended not only to make the resident feel at home from only inside his home, but also from the moment you walk through the garage of the building. Hence the building's name: House America.
On the facade, done with simple lines and neutral forms, you can find the contrast of the materiality, seeking for an aesthetic language that displays it in a harmonious way from the past to the present. The presence of rustic clay bricks expresses the idea of creating an atmosphere not only for comfort but also of nostalgia to the residents of the building and also it’s area, bringing us back to the construction techniques. As a counterpoint to the brick rusticity, a volume is designed slightly offset from black porcelain, together with the glass panel’s facade, explore and reveal the aesthetic differences of each material, offering a distinguished contrast of textures and reflections.
Compensating for the lack of common equipment, for instance a ballroom or gym (spaces which are offered in abundance in the neighborhood where the building is located), a space for leisure and introspection was design on the top floor with a vegetated terrace with technology that does not require daily watering nor major maintenance, due to the continuous presence of water and nutrients in its base. This space, in addition to offering residents the opportunity to enjoy a full view of the city, it provides the surroundings of the neighbor’s buildings a nicer view when compared to conventional roofs, increasing the amount of green areas to their daily landscapes.