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Architecture practice and urban garden


FAD Awards finalist 2019  Interior design
Description Technical file

The Jury’s appraisal: The jury values in this small project its ability to work with a very tight budget in which each project decision has to be unequivocal in order to achieve an optimal result. Its sensitivity in making the most of what is already on site or in recycling elements from various sources are appreciable strategies in this project despite its small scale.

More garden and less architecture
The project for a studio was something more than an office: this was a project for cultural and neighbourly use in a state of evolution in the centre of Granada, which seeks to generate an urban garden through collective practices. The project aims to gently colonise the building’s roof by promoting new cultural and leisure uses, with the garden as the dynamising element. The existing, noble circular tower is reused as a board and meeting room in which to take the strategic decisions and where the unavoidable round table defines the shape around which those decisions will be taken.

Unveiled finds
The old guard’s house, an architectural piece that catalyses the entire initiative, is reused as an architecture practice. During the self-built reforms, the different phases the construction had been through were uncovered. The sediments and finds reveal that originally it was a wash house, a commonly found vernacular construction in the neighbouring Albaicín district and which invaded the roof of the noble building of the Rodríguez Acosta family for the use of the palace servants. Later, in the second half of the 20th century and with the arrival of electricity, the wash house ceased to be used and was transformed into the porter’s house. In this new use it underwent two reforms and enlargements, an initial one that sought an aesthetic similar to the noble one of the rest of the building and a second enlargement according to techniques used for popular housing in the late 20th century. The reform project, which occupies this vernacular architectural space standing on a noble, cutting-edge building, gradually finds these strata in its walls and floors, allowing a new use to be imposed on the unwritten but now unveiled history of this construction..

Minimal intervention
The studio seeks to minimise the intervention by removing layers to the point where the different phases can be read, protecting them and preventing them from being worn down with water-repelling paint that secure them, and implements the necessary solutions for the new use, such as the electrical installation and a new continuous floor that nonetheless facilitates the reading of previous layouts, or a new entrance to the studio after discovering an opening that had been walled up, or reactivating the air conditioning machines that had been clumsily installed in the early 21st century but which also form part of the building’s history and allow for making economies in the intervention. The furnishings involved the recycling of noble doors no longer used in the building, permitting the reading of a concealed history of the architectures that were not worth documenting. The project does not aim to maintain all the
pre-existing elements but rather makes the most of its perceived lack of historical value to embark on a comprehensive reading of the construction by taking the opportunity of its new use.

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Localización Location: Granada. Spain. Autores Authors: Á GRX Arquitectos | Álvaro Gor Gómez, Carlos Gor Gómez, Agustín Gor Gómez, arquitectos. Arquitecto Técnico Quantity surveyor: Isaac Gor Gómez. Colaboradores Collaborators: Maribel Fernández Díaz, Sophia Heinen, José Miguel Pérez Sevilla, Romain Guigo, arquitectos, Daniel Bigotesucio, artista. Promotor Developer: GRX Arquitectos. Constructora General Contractor: GRX Arquitectos, Construcciones Requena Asenjo. Fotografía Photography: Javier Callejas Sevilla.
GRX Arquitectos

Álvaro Gor Gómez

Carlos Gor Gómez

Agustín Gor Gómez

Javier Callejas