|Valois Building: Rammed Earth Construction
The Residential Building is incorporated seamlessly into the neighborhood of Las Mercedes, a small-scale residential area in Asunción that is undergoing a transformation and densification process. It is built on a small plot (8.40 m x 25 m) and aims to operate with the greatest respect in a consolidated residential area, characterized by surroundings of brick and greenery.
The construction is simple and honest, using rammed earth as a basic material. The idea is to introduce this construction system, usually perceived as rural or vernacular, as an urban possibility. The design proposes new possibilities for dwelling, understanding the climatic complexities of the subtropics and attending to specific pertinent socio-cultural characteristics, while recognizing the importance of the participation and collaboration of artisans and master builders who are knowledgeable about the technique.
The building design is based on a central box with a series of windows that perforate the façade. A generous setback gives the neighborhood a public space as a cordial gesture. The apartments, separated by the stairwell, culminate in a terrace that offers views of the neighborhood, the sky, the Chaco landscape, and the Paraguay River.
The rammed-earth structure is detached from the property line with an open and ventilated gallery, covered with a metal mesh that acts as a green veil and light filter. Various species of native plants climb the structure, providing a natural screen. In addition to contributing flowers and aromas to the neighborhood, it protects the building from the sun and rain while generating an attractive, shaded intermediate space. These well-ventilated spaces enable lighting conditions towards the Northeast that are ideal for everyday activities.
One of the main goals was to minimize the impact on a traditional neighborhood in Asunción.
|ISSN : 2575-5374