Various architectures

Mourão. Portugal

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Garducho Biological Station

João Maria Ventura Trindade, arquitecto

FAD Award 2009  Architecture
Description Technical file

The building’s layout on the landscape transforms it into an ethereal and totemic object situated on the natural site it seeks to analyse.
The Garducho Biological Station (EBG) is situated in the Portuguese region of Mourão, which boasts a major natural heritage site protected by EU directives that have led to it being classified as an SPA (Special Protection Area for Birdlife) and SCI (Sites of Community Importance). 2005 saw the start of a restructuring project for this space, which seeks to transform the EBG into a benchmark station at national level for undertaking conservation and research tasks, environmental education and promotion of the region’s natural heritage. It also seeks to become an explicative centre for the use of alternative energies, waste treatment and rainwater collection.

In a protected area, the intervention seeks to organise the functional programme by using the three existing buildings as a basis in order to achieve a greater built surface in keeping with the need to occupy less space on the land.

The buildings operate as support elements for a structure that has been raised above the terrain and is suspended in order to organise up in the air a series of courtyards and routes between the various functional nodes that leave the ground intact and permeable. In this way an apparently forceful proposal is implanted on the terrain with considerable environmental sensitivity.

The construction is raised one meter above the highest level of the terrain, defining almost private courtyards around the residence building and, owing to the marked slope of the topography, a height of 2.4 metres in the lower part, establishing the access through an entrance courtyard next to the laboratory building, in the opposite end of the 55 x 27.5- metre rectangle.

The centre of the complex is marked by a courtyard of greater dimension, around which gravitate the different buildings, the covered exterior spaces and the routes of the station.

At floor level, the hanging planes frame wide-ranging vistas over the horizontal landscape. In opposition, from the ramp access in the upper level the complex is enclosed between opaque walls, defining a pause in the contemplation of nature and concentrating the attention on the displayed contents that refer to it.

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Localización: Herdade dos Guizos, 7240 Mourão. Portugal. Autor: João Maria Ventura Trindade, arquitecto. Colaboradores edificio: Chiara Ternullo, Nuno Marcos, André Monteiro Rosa, Adelaide Neves, Lourenço van Innis, Filipe Carvalho, Susana Medeiros, Jorge Vicente, Liliana César Rodrigues, (exposición) Filipe Nunes, Rita Figueiredo, Nélson Rodrigues. Ingenieros: PRPC – engenheiros (estructura e infraestructuras). Paulo Cardoso, Pedro Romano con Hugo Veríssimo, Carlos Certal. Energía técnica: João Mira, Rui Batista. Intervención artística: Fernanda Fragateiro con Filipe Meireles, José Fragateiro, Patrícia Cativo. Constructor: Construções Monsaraz. Virgílio Valadas. Promotor: CEAI, Centro de Estudo da Avifauna Ibèrica. Carla Janeiro. Tiago Ferro. Fotografía: André Carvalho | José Manuel Silva.
Trindade, Joao Maria
1100-319 Lisboa, Portugal