Situated in the Jardins, a neighborhood that is undergoing radical change, in an avenue of intense traffic, this building, facing north, appears as an organic incarnation of the urban and natural “aggressions” suffered by a tropical city. The noise, the insulation and the intense traffic are the building materials that feed this project. In spite of this important aspect, the building is not blind or deaf, but was born from the energy of its context, and uses it to re-qualify itself, as if in a boomerang effect.
The impossible transparency between the building and the street was originated from the dematerialization of the facade: the wooden filter forms an organic membrane that reflects and follows the flux of the cars. Besides providing insular protection, this facade plays two opposing roles: it allows the public eye into the building, creating an interconnecting visual game between the public and the private eye, but at the same time allows some privacy.
The building looks at the city, subtly revealing its interior through a sequence of vertically superposed filters. The plug, the filters and the frontal glass walls connect the internal and the external spaces, while in the rear facade, double opaque glass windows alternate with simple transparent plates that create a beguiling visual game of transparencies that light up the project, and connect the interior part with the exterior.
This visual and sensorial fluidity reflects itself in the strong and problematic relationship between the public and the private eye: the internal life of the building is followed by the watcher’s eye. The concrete plug fixed to the membrane facade completes this link, creating a physical relationship between the external and internal urban space.
The three floors are structured by a strong vertical element – a concrete stairway. Its folded geometry spans and links the spaces, from the parking lot to the deck that offers the view of a variety of treetops and the surrounding space.