Valparaíso: The Latest Architecture and News
After the fire this past April in Valparaíso, Chile, a group of young architects went to the port city to develop a reconstruction project based on energy efficiency, recycled materials, and adaptability to Valparaíso's topographic context. The Minga Valpo project has not only achieved these objectives, but it has also allowed families to help build their own houses. In a mere three months, Minga Valpo has already built three houses.
Take a look at photographs of the project and read the architects' description after the break.
For those unfamiliar with Valparaíso, allow me to inform you: this city is a treasure. The UNESCO World Heritage site and cultural capital of Chile is defined by its winding paths, happily graffitied streets, antiquated funiculars, and - above all - its colorful, tightly-packed hills. And because of its precarious density, the city was brought to its knees by vicious forest fires this past weekend, fires which quickly spread and consumed 2,500 acres, displacing over 12,500 people whose homes were destroyed.
The hills where the fires hit hardest are similar to Brazilian favelas - inhabited by informal residents who have little to no access to infrastructure and who constructed their homes themselves, illegally, and - as the fires have proven - rather perilously.
The response of the Chilean government so far has been to suggest bulldozing and building again in “a more orderly manner.” To do so, the government has intimated that it will expropriate land and relocate citizens to safer sites.
Winner of an international competition in 2009 after the rejection of a proposal from brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer, the Valparaíso Cultural Center designed by HLPS arquitectos was finished last year with an impressive result. Today we have this great video Cristobal Palma just shared with us, shot a couple of months ago.
Architects: Nicolás del Rio + Max Núñez Location: Quintero, Valparaíso Region, Chile Architect In Charge: Nicolás del Rio, Max Núñez Project Year: 2009 Project Area: 150 sqm Photographs: Erieta Attali, Felipe Camus, Sergio Pirrone