Located in a built-up peripheral section of Loreggia, a small town near Padua, this new house might sit in an area dominated by edifices from the 1960s and 70s, but it shows traits of experimental residential building. The design combines the search for a rational, comfortable living space with the need to reduce energy consumption and use sustainable materials. The result is a moderate "environmental footprint", especially because of the extensive use of recyclable metal.
The building is clearly identifiable, with the heart of the design being a combination of a highly specific composition and careful use of innovative technology. The volumes are arranged along a longitudinal central axis that runs north-south and endows the building with a sense of symmetry. The northern and southern facades are less developed than the eastern and western ones. The three above-ground floors and the basement parking area contain eight variously-sized housing units, including two duplexes, and eight garages. There are a further eight external parking spaces.
The structure is also characterized by its sharply pitched roof on two sides. On the southern side, a deep vertical slit cuts into this 45° roof to open up a space for the entrance and stairwell, dividing this elevation in two and characterising this facade. The upper section of the roof has solar and photovoltaic panels, while the lower sections are glazed, although these windows that provide light for the living spaces can only be partially opened. In summer, automated sliding awnings offer protection from the sun. The south side also has a modular touch, as the dark blue panes of the windows, the white aluminium frames and the side zinc-titanium panels are given equal importance. The effect is a striking colour scheme.
The eastern and western elevations have some defining basic features. The ventilated walls are clad in cellulose fibre and resin panels that have very definite colours. These vary in size, but create a very evident trapezoidal backdrop against which the windows and balconies truly stand out. The windows are placed right across the facade, without any limitations imposed by symmetry. Virtually all the windows are accompanied by a balcony created using a frame of perforated metal sheets. These white overhangs create character, helping define the aesthetics while also adding a functional touch.
Inside, controlling the natural lighting and ventilation is fundamental to ensuring living comfort. As such, modern technology has been used to ensure the optimal production and distribution of heat through underfloor heating and an advanced central heating system.
Location: Loreggia, Padova
Client: Belvedere Costruzioni
Gross Floor Area: 730 m2
Cost of Construction: 1.400.000 Euros
Architects: Bruno Stocco Architetto
Design Team: Valentina Vedovato, Giulio Stocco, Alessandro Schievano
Contractor: Belvedere Costruzioni
Structural: Maurizio Meroi
Plant: Giuseppe Schievano
Photography: © Bruno Stocco Architetto
Bruno Stocco was born in Camposampiero (Padua), where he operates his studio. After graduating as an art teacher from Padua’s l'Istituto Statale d'Arte ‘Pietro Selvatico’ under Alvarez Bresciani, he graduated in Architecture from the IUAV in Venice in 1980. His thesis, supervised by Valeriano Pastor, dealt with the Prato area of Valle a Padua. He also studied under Carlo Scarpa. He started his professional career in the ’80s as a regular participant in conferences and discussions on land conservation, and publishing articles and studies on the ancient and sacred architecture of Padua. A highlight is La tradizione e la cultura della casa nell'alto padovano (The tradition and culture of the house in the Also Padovana area) with a preface by Mario Botta. Between 1992 and 2002, he was a member of the Curia of Padua’s Diocesan Commission on Sacred Art. A key focus of Stocco’s professional life is the restoration of classified historic buildings, which he performs in collaboration with the various authorities and Ville Venete. On behalf of the Padua Order of Architects and Board of Surveyors, he co-created and jointly supervised the I-II-III restoration courses, which involved setting up a laboratory and collaboration on the publication of the course proceedings (published by Libreria Cortina di Padova). His work has been featured in exhibitions and monographs, with numerous articles appearing in professional journals. He published the monograph Il restauro della Cattedrale di Padova (The restoration of Padua cathedral) for Skira.