The renovation and restoration project works on the idea of a new internal configuration, which renews most of the building, preserving the historic layout of the facades and eliminating surpluses and incongruous openings. The preservation of the facades composition’s character is enhanced by an interpretation of the flush shutters on the facade and the figure of frame and sill, often forgotten in the contemporary restoration.
Internally, the whole building revolves around the existing staircase, which is incongruous and not passable. The project maintains the centrality of the staircase, making it independent from the ground floor, through a new interpretation of the entrance hall that rises in its terminal part, creating a mezzanine to place the ramps. Hence, a single annex/apartment emerges on the ground floor that revolves around the staircase, retrieving the cross-vaulted room as a library in continuity with the existing buildings.
A new concrete stairs substitutes the old incongruous stairs and connects all the floors, becoming a structural box inside the volume. The internal floors, affected by overlapping structures and surfaces, are replaced, reconstructing the slab floors with new lighter and more functional wooden frames, to redistribute the levels inside the section.
The main apartment locates on the 1st floor day living spaces and on the 2nd floor night sleeping spaces.
On the first floor a continuous open space defines a dining room and a living room - tv room, while the kitchen is placed on the main façade towards the courtyard. At the end of the open space a corridor distributes a study room, a bathroom and a service storage room.
The bedrooms and a large multipurpose space/playing room are located on the second floor, where a steel ramp ensures the connection to the study room on mezzanine, that becomes a sort of bridge over the spaces of the sleeping area. The different stairs material translates the idea of an overlapping new structure inside the existent building.
On one side the child bedroom leads by an internal stairs wardrobe to the mezzanine, while the parents’ bedroom on the other side is a double level space facing the wooden roof structure.
The main façade as background and scene redefines the courtyard as an hall foyer, a playing outdoor space and a new private meeting place between neighbours. The project, as a grafting, tries to enhance the building environmental surroundings.
Founded in Reggio Emilia by Christian Gasparini, NAT OFFICE turns its attention to the relationship between architecture, city and landscape and investigates modular structures, intertwining scales, typologies, spaces for a new identity between place and people: Architecture becomes a medium between Nature and Technology.
The practice extends its approach to different areas: masterplan/landscape, cultural/public, learning/worship, sport/leisure, working/office, temporary/exhibit and living/housing. Participation to design competitions allows experimentation: the office won several architectural competitions in Italy and abroad.
NAT Office’ s works received many awards, such us Architizer A+Awards - New York and American Architecture Prize - Los Angeles in 2017 (RABM), Archdaily Boty candidate, Inarcassa and Cicop Award – Firenze in 2018 (HLBH), BigSee Architecture Award - Lubiana, London International Creative Competition – London and DNA Paris Design Award - Paris in 2019 (HHCR).
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