El Retiro House Extension
Juan Alberto Andrade
Juan Alberto Andrade
Baldosas Del Ecuador
Cuqui Rodríguez, María José Váscones, Melissa Toasa, Victoria Peralta, Duda Rodriguez
El Retiro is a project of extension and attachment from an independent body to a multifamily housing, that serves and transforms preexistence into a productive habitat. The proposal is issued as an opportunity to understand and build specific, viable and productive solutions that attend to the progressive growth of housing, and to take advantage of the residual spaces generated by Ecuador´s policies.
Housing scenario: Architecture as a response to the continuous need for the reinvention of a habitat. Housing is an activity, a built process.
It's a dynamic object, that contains and combines a plurality of uses, individuals and activities that generate transformations that the housing must assimilate, therefore, the evolution and adaptation of the housing through time is an indissoluble process of everyday life that benefits change and transformation to renovate its validity.
Its functional transmutation and therefore, the transformation of the urban landscapes acquire sense from a contextual reading, where neighborhoods progressively grow, replying and adapting to the immediate needs of habitants or communities.
Mechanism of extension: Strategies for adaptability and mutation. The growth process of housing is a complex and dynamic phenomenon. It requires a series of possibilities regarding location, temporality, usability and physical, human and economical available resources.
Thus, this section synthetically identifies and associates the concepts (terms) of Intraproperty, Crystallographic Growth, Addition and Hypercase, identified by Lucía Martín López in her study: The growing house, The programmed growth of housing.
Schematically, El Retiro is defined as an intra property of crystallographic growth intervention whose objective is to intervene within the limits of the urban property of 250m2 under its limitations of the area and height dictated by local norms (under local regulations that dictate the limitations of area and height), the proposal increases the volume (dimension) of constructed area: 305m2.
The intervention thereby adjoins (appends) 9m2 to the 305m2 of the multifamily preexistent housing, the same that used to contain a private workspace of 9m2 inside to which the proposal is extended horizontally and independently.
EL RETIRO solves its roof, structure, closing (top ring beam) and services autonomously from the housing.
These factors, added to its proper location in the frontal retreat of the property (5m) and its relationship with the accesses and the street enable the conversion of multifamiliar to a productive habitat, allowing commercial and office use of the new intervention for one of the families of the multifamily, for this purpose a project of conciliation between housing and the street is proposed through an intermediate space that allows us to shape the physical-urban environment, understanding its nature and legitimacy.
Program. El Retiro, in essence, is a project of extension and attachment. The extension is because a utile area is added to a space contained inside the multifamily, and the attachment is because the proposal adheres autonomously to preexistence.
This space compounded by 18m2 in total had to contain: a common work space, bathroom, cafeteria, kitchenette, equipment storage space and library.
The intervention was carried out on the front setback of the property, which had conditions such as the underground water cistern of the multifamily that occupied 100% of the area available for the new intervention, the same as required by the structural nature of the project, the entrance hall to the multifamily, a 25-year-old tree, which required a ventilation patio, 0.70m of interior slope and the front enclosure of the property with consolidated tree planting as part of the neighborhood facades.
It was decided to divide the available area into 3 transverse flanks to locate a workspace for 4 people in the back, the kitchen and the social area facing the street through a single window, and an intermediate service space that contains the bathroom. , the cafeteria, the warehouse, and the interior patio.
The interior space is defined by the insertion of a load-bearing wall to the street and a metal piece that divides the aforementioned thirds and contains both the bathroom unit and the kitchenette, in addition to outlining the interior patio. The interior patio serves El Retiro as a means of light and wind, connected directly through longitudinal wooden windows.
El Retiro is now due to both the street and the home itself, leaving a blurred boundary between the public and the private, even within the same urban property. Under this premise, the previous dynamics of the residents of the multi-family complex, who used the communal park of trees located in front of the land to carry out outdoor activities, are taken advantage of.
The link of the intervention with the park of trees is direct but controlled, therefore, a single 1.00m x 1.00m window was proposed, located in such a way that it serves as a desk or support surface, returning to the street its main need: interaction.
Material qualities: Logic and expressivity. El Retiro's material palette prescinds the habitual usage of concrete blocks and paint jobs, in fact, alternatively, physical and spatial necessities are solved through the same materials.
The project decisions are directly related to the conditions of the place and intervene as a material response to the site. The need for a structural element outside the limits of the multi-family cistern gave rise to the proposal of a load-bearing wall that supports the light structure of the same extension, complemented by the masonry and floors with light technologies.
A wooden roof structure was proposed that stiffened the different techniques used on land by combining a stereotomic body of compacted earth and bahareque walls with a metal sheet roof.
The structural unit is propounded as the irreducible essence of the architectural form, that is, the slope of the roof, the density of the wall and the dimension of the structural beams give rise to the geometry of the project.
The wall becomes the main element of the structure and the new piece is inserted into the urban morphology. It is composed of a base of limestone rock typical of the sector, which functions as a foundation, on which rests a 30 cm thick rammed earth wall structured by metal elements that function as a cladding, visor - lintel and rail of the interior metal curtain that Define a single window of measured contact and interaction with the street.
From the wall, pine beams extend that make up the slope of the roof and are anchored by metal fastening plates to the existing structure of the multifamily. These beams support the interior storage spaces and the carpentry.
The metal piece is made of 3mm black iron sheets without structure. The material and manufacturing technique is decided due to the limited availability of interior space.
For its new entrances, sliding metal elements were used to prioritize access and provide security to the object. Likewise, the load-bearing wall is protected with two sliding metal curtains. The floor of El Retiro is resin-based. The exterior and interior expressiveness are a product of material logic, its structural module, and tectonics.
The use of land is proposed due to its thermal inertia (east-west oriented) and low impact, but it is consolidated as a manifesto, as a clear declaration of intentions for the use of the material on the Coast of Ecuador, practice in a state of abandonment, typical of the social and economic biases of the region and new developments.