Bank Regeneration of Lagoa das Furnas


The project intends to evoke the architectural landscape of the Azores, drawing upon the form and material that embed the collective memory of this island and archipelago, which have become, with time, a second nature of this place. Therefore the buildings are archetypal volumes, simple and compact, made of local basaltic stone.

The Furnas Monitoring and Investigation Centre

This building asserts itself as the largest and most exceptional around the lagoon drawing on an intermediate space between exterior and interior – the courtyard. This element results from a subtraction from the volume, cutting it from the central zone (the vertex of the four territories) to the exterior limit of a facade, thus enabling access to the interior. This internal courtyard also becomes the point where the main internal compartments are revealed. These spaces, cut off by the subtraction that defines the courtyard, maintain all relations between interior and exterior. The building was therefore perceived as a sculpture, a block of raw material that is intentionally cut in order to capture light and the lagoon itself.

Accommodation for researchers

The building for temporary accommodation is a compact volume of four territories compartmentalised into four units. The building is cut in each of the four facades by a wooden threshold that enables the penetration of light and access to each of the accommodation units. There is an established hierarchy of heights between the four spaces related to the solar orientation of each unit. The exterior wall of the building is structural, where the necessary infrastructures and services are placed, as opposed to the light interior timber walls.

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