Mientras que mi web professional muestra las obras de mi despacho como arquitecto, este blog recopila documentación sobre una serie de actividades que desarrollo en paralelo a él. El ejercicio internacional de la profesión, las entidades entorno a las que se organizan los arquitectos o la reflexión sobre los modos de intervención en la ciudad constituyen los principales puntos de atención, al tiempo que se facilita el acceso a una serie de enlaces relacionados.

“18 dwellings in Begues” finalist at the Ugo Rivolta Award

The aim of the Ugo Rivolta Award is to bring into light the finest social housing projects constructed in Europe over the last five years. Our project in Begues is among the finalists.

The site for these 18 subsidized housing units lies between a block of row housing and a series of single-family homes. Despite being low-rise, the former constitutes a forceful urban element that occupies the territory in which it is set. The latter, smaller in size, have breathing space on plots with extensive vegetation. The planned dwellings must, then, address the transition between these two typologies, as well as exploiting the conditions of their own site.


The dwellings are grouped around two communication shafts, each of which leads to three dwellings per landing. Block A combines one-, two- and three-bedroom dwellings, whereas Block B contains all the two-bedroom apartments. Block A is intended for young people and block B for the elderly.

They adopt what is almost a single model for all 18 apartments. They are L-shaped with all rooms, including bathrooms, airing directly to the exterior. They are overlapped so that all the living rooms have good orientation, with openings that face south-east and south-west, ensuring sufficient daylight, even in mid-winter.

To regulate the amount of sunlight received, the south-west façade has metal slat blinds to filter its rays. In the south-east, alternatively, projections provide a shield from the sun in summer but let it in during the winter. Where the two orientations come together, the projections are complemented by blinds that prevent insolation at the most exposed point. Since some of the residents will be elderly people and, therefore, more sedentary, it seems appropriate to give their living rooms access to relatively spacious terraces where they can sit and enjoy their own landscaped space.

This layout also guarantees the privacy of the dwellings; not only are the living rooms well oriented and visually protected from the street, but very few of the other rooms overlook the point of entrance via the doorways. This zigzagging block also avoids direct confrontation with the neighbouring single-family dwellings, which would be unavoidable in a geometrically compact block.