Execution: CM2 Engenharia Civil
Landscaping: Valéria Romão Morellato Hardt
Team: Alessandra Franco, Fernanda Einsfeld, Mônica Ferreira da Silva
Text description provided by the architects. Situated near the green woodlands in the north of Curitiba, residence SR32 occupies a 240-m² site with a slope of more than two meters longitudinally and three boundaries free from surrounding buildings, with the north-western portion facing a preserved green area and the northeast giving onto Bacacheri park, a local landmark. To benefit from these conditions the design established a south-facing blind gable (a legal requirement) and three facades opening on to the surrounding landscape. In terms of relief, the highest part of the site was used for the ground floor, benefiting from the slope to create a basement area, which is in fact practically level with the exterior elevation. These conditions, together with meeting low-cost requirements and making use of the space and views, meant that usage was arranged vertically, with the basement housing garage and storage, the ground floor with social and service areas, upper floor with personal spaces and the roof area for leisure activities and contemplation of the landscape. The connection between the different floors occurs by means of a steel staircase with steps set into the blind wall to the south. Steel cables provide protection and definition of the vertical circulation.
The small dimensions of the site led to maximization of the garden area at ground level, setting back the building and using part of the upper floor to provide a roof for the garden-facing barbecue space and deck. In this way, 160m² – accounting for 2/3 of the site area – is used for gardens and ground-level open space. Apart from the small service area, office and washroom, all the other spaces are integrated and face onto the garden, providing a feeling of space and connection with the garden and the woods. The upper floor surrounds a central open area, which provides a visual and spatial connection with the ground floor. Two Jack-and-Jill-bathroom bedrooms face onto the park and an en suite master bedroom faces the woods. There is also a living room convertible to another en suite room, whose bathroom has currently been adapted as a wardrobe. The pizzeria space on the roof area has glass doors that form a visual connection to the hanging garden, with Bacacheri park in the background.
Most of the materials employed were jointly developed or transformed by the architecture and engineering teams, together with local suppliers. The brick fac-ings were devised directly at the brickworks, which also helps to add value to a craft product made to the south of Curitiba. The ground level flooring is made from polished concrete. The slab itself was ground and polished to produce a shine and highlight the stones in the gravel mix. Apart from the upper-level flooring, the rest of the wood used was pressured-treated pine with a burned finish, further highlighting the summer-winter grain of the timber and providing the necessary texture to prevent slipperiness on the stairway and decking. Leftover wood was used to make countertops and tables. Facade finish used combinations of cement, pigment and acrylic-based plaster applied to the render en-riched with vermiculite, aiming to improve insulation qualities.
The building uses several solutions for improving its environmental qualities. Natural lighting is guaranteed throughout the day through the glass roof over the stairway, operating together with the open space in the upper floor, which in turn enables the connection between the floors, providing a chimney effect, with fresh air from the woods entering at ground level and used air exiting through the roof area. For the cold months, a wood-burning stove has been installed on the ground floor, which heats the social areas and also has a specially designed heat chamber with piping to pump warm air to the upper-story bedrooms. The alternative heating and cooling systems mean that the house has no need for installation of any air conditioning. Rainwater collection and solar heating systems add to the residence’s strategies for low environmental impact.