The social housing neighbourhood of São João de Deus, originally built during the 1940s, is characterised as a work typically associated with the architectural model known as “‘Soft Portuguese”, which the old fascist regime adopted as stylistic dogma in national public buildings of the time. Over time, but particularly during the last three decades, the neighbourhood has undergone dramatic alterations that have lost the character of its origins, changed its main urban and typological qualities, and generalised construction in an anarchic and informal way, causing serious residential and social damage. The transformation of the existing constructions restores their original volumetrics, giving them a renovated image that is not arbitrary but the result of the extreme rationality of the constructional options for the transformation of its space and form: The reconfiguration of the original typologies was developed in order to achieve apartments with a larger living area, with greater spatial flexibility, and adapted to the current regulations. The technical decisions associated with a radical principle of economy of scale, of what is essential to the construction and the thorough maintenance of its built elements (principal and structural) formed the sustainable essence of the transformation of the existing core:
- Continuous used of a single span (the existing span) for all openings, which involves the repetition of the same window and door details more than 700 times, in standard wooden profile, ensuring crossed natural ventilation.
- Integral maintenance of the external wall of structural stone, as well as the wooden roof structural supports.
- Re-covering of the roof structure with a light system (so as not to overload the existing wooden supports) of waterproofing and insulation, formed of a layer of PIR + asphalt fabric, finished with black slate, going down through the gable wall, adding a gravitational drainage system, watering the gardens and that will avoid the need for hydraulic infrastructures throughout the all complex.
- Strong insulation of the external street and garden walls, strengthening the thermal inertia of the thick stone structure, finished in white thermal white plaster.
s. joão de deus social housing
(1st prize, limited competition)
nuno brandão costa
rita leite (coordination)
charlotte jeanjean, francisco pereira, inês loureiro, joão fânzeres, maria souto moura, mariana santos
ana isabel vale (abprojectos)
miguel vale (abprojectos)
maria da luz santiago (rs associados)
raul bessa (get)