- Builder: Cerro Apoquindo 4 / Guillermo Bustamente
- ITO : GT consultores / Jose Fortuni
- Landscaping: Bernardita de Corral
- Program: Collective Housing
- City: Vitacura
- Country: Chile
Text description provided by the architects. The Mar Jónico Building is located in the district of Vitacura, a residential neighborhood that has undergone an intense densification process over the past few years with the development of eight-story buildings in an area that had one- and two-story houses in the 1970s.
The lot is located on the corner of Calle Mar Jónico and Nilo Azul in an intermediate situation regarding the height of the building. To the south, it faces the aforementioned area that is home to buildings that are an average of eight stories tall. To the north, the local regulations have set the maximum height at three floors in order to maintain the area’s scale.
It is this intermediate situation, that is, a buffer between the neighborhood’s two scales, that guided us in the design process because although the property allows for five stories, we chose to build a four-story structure that we believe to be a better fit with its surroundings. Refraining from going beyond four stories allowed us to comply with the bill for Article 6.1.8 of the General Construction and Urbanism Ordinance, which allows the number of apartments in the project to be increased by 25% in certain circumstances, one of which is not exceeding four stories. This allowed us to choose to have a larger built surface than would be allowed for a five-story building. As such, this strategy of lowering the height as a way to better fit with the surroundings allowed the client to develop a more marketable surface area and thus make the project viable in an exercise that we believe benefited all parties.
The project is a regular, elongated structure made of exposed concrete. All of the apartments look out onto the street with overhanging terraces also made of exposed concrete. The entrance was placed on a corner and is accessed through a courtyard that is completely open to the public space with stairs and a ramp for the disabled. This achieves a fluid flow between the street level and the building entrance, which is a half-story lower.
The units on the first floor have patios and those on the fourth have private rooftop areas to make use of the complex’s roof.
Given that the building has just 26 apartments, and in an effort to lower administrative costs, we chose to experiment with smart technology for both access control and e-commerce reception, which we believe will have implications for the design of communities in the coming years. The project was thus designed with a system of partitions and card-controlled access points, wi-fi technology, and space designed to receive deliveries through a box that provides a digital connection between the delivery staff and the recipient. This makes such activities faster, safer and more fluid. This means that the building can function with minimal staff and a remote concierge responsible for monitoring cameras and registering visitors, thus reducing the monthly costs that must be covered by the owners.