The 'social housing' project was created to develop a subsidized housing complex that, in addition to making the housing asset more accessible, improves the quality of life, especially in aspects related to interpersonal relations, integration and exchange, space participation and all those practices of social sustainability that make communities more cohesive and supportive. In the design, special attention was therefore paid to the study and treatment of spaces for public use and their accessibility. The project lot is surrounded on three sides (north, east, and west) by high retaining walls that divide the internal space, which is completely pedestrian, from the outside. The vehicular traffic is limited to the south-facing side, where the accesses to the two garages are located. On the other hand, a stairway connects the private interior spaces for common use to the public walkway to the north. The two independent bases that follow the course of the land are partially underground and harbor the garages, the cellars, five residential units, and the communal space. Above the basements, there are three building bodies, arranged as a courtyard building, with three to four storeys and 62 more residential units. Almost all the dwelling units overlook the central space of the courtyard, while those on the ground floor are equipped with a small garden, which not only constitutes a true extension towards the outside of the dwelling but also guarantees privacy and introspection from the public spaces, while not creating too many closures. The complex opens towards an internally planted green area where social and aggregative activities are concentrated with rest areas, small squares, and a "green" step on which one can sit as in a small open-air theatre. The central social space is intended for temporary collective activities for the residents of the complex: condominium meetings, birthday parties, and other uses that can temporarily involve the residents in a covered and air-conditioned area. The chosen/selected materials guarantee a high standard of architectural quality while maintaining a low construction cost. Fair-faced brick covers the parts of the base facing the public streets to maintain coherence with the other buildings in the area and with the pre-existing elements of industrial archaeology, while towards the internal areas the basement is left in rough scratched plaster. A series of planters arranged at various heights, with climbing and covering plants, characterize the elevation. The linear façades are in white plaster enriched by the balustrades of the terraces made of metal and perforated sheet metal, the color of which varies according to the type of facing: on the elevations along the public street, they are anthracite, while for the facing onto the internal courtyard they have three variants of grey.
Archest is an architecture and engineering company established in 2006 through the union of two design studios. Composed of over 50 architects, engineers and technicians with considerable experience in the integrated design and management of public works, even of considerable complexity, in Italy and abroad. The main offices are in the province of Udine, but Archest also has offices in Milan, Rome and Moscow.
After the concept phase, the architectural design is developed in an integrated manner, and with the coordination of architects, by the in-house engineering office, which channels the project on the tracks of sustainability, industrialisation and digitalisation through an integrated BIM modelling process, thus the entire design and execution phase can be kept under control while remaining consistent with the initial project idea.
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