In order to bring new life to the building and avoid this fate, the architects developed a plan around an open file. “The main challenge has been to find a way to make the project economically sustainable. This is a key issue for many young people, tired of paying rent, and ready to invest in their future home, ”explains Séverine. Between low wages and high housing prices, it is necessary to explore new models of life.
The house is divided in half by an acoustic protection wall, a common noise barrier made of concrete or ceramic bricks with several air chambers, which can be partially or completely demolished to add space from one unit to the house. other. “The model can evolve in parallel with the economic or spatial needs of the inhabitants,” explains Séverine. In other words, this house can be changed as needed.
Regarding the color scheme and materiality, Severine paid homage to the building’s earlier life, choosing yellow tiles reminiscent of a gymnasium’s locker room, cement and other treatments that gave a raw and industrial. Units have open layouts, private courtyards, sliding glass doors, pops of color, and plenty of indoor-outdoor space.
“Due to Madrid’s mild climate, we considered it essential to provide the units with outdoor space, which could expand indoor spaces for most of the year,” says Severine. Three-pane sliding windows open up two-thirds of each window and connect the living areas to the courtyards.
Although houses will change over time, Séverine has learned many lessons from this project, the most important being flexibility in housing. “Due to the pandemic, we have been forced to live and work in spaces that were not built to accommodate it,” he says. “This situation made us understand the need to offer spaces adaptable to different uses.