A dense urban fabric, an historical reality, a deep redevelopment of the surroundings: the design for Blowing Bubbles a new residential edifice in this area has been done to complete this part of the city and the process in which is involved.
The building shape is born from the will of inviting people in a new public space structured as the existing ones in the neighbourhood but in a contemporary vision: a green courtyard where people can meet, rest, and enjoy different kind of activities joined to what happens on the ground floor of the building. For this purpose the structure is one floor taller than the directions say; the activities based on the ground floor could be improved by an osmotic relationship with the square outside, the C shape occupy a limited portion of soil and need little more height to embrace a livable public tile in the city mosaic.
This ground floor is therefore characterized by leisures and shops, for example a coffee bar, a bookshop, a toyshop, a diy shop and a market could be a possible variation of use for a mixed space. These activities can be extended outside the walls on dedicated areas.
These islands, defined by seats, trees and a different paving, offer the possibility of an interaction between people related to the inside, where is possible to experiment together different jobs or share spare time, incentivating also fluxes of users through all the district. The existing stairs facing the internal facade has been maintained and enhanced by the setting of the plaza, so that different manifestations, organized and spontaneous, can take place.
The auditorium occupies the whole basement, underground on the square’ side and at the ground level on the other side on Rue Baussenque, where the main entrances are next to the internal core of stairs and lifts from which is also possible to accede. Warehouses, dressing rooms and toilets can be used also by workers of the ground floor activities and are located on the external stripes of the plan, leaving all the remaining space for the foyer and the conference room. The remaining four floors are dedicated interely to the dwelling: three different sizes of apartments, mixed and organized together in an orthogonal grid that guarantees functionality and also allow to have inside standard furniture despite the curved shape of the building, that instead gives a particular overview of the outside. On each floor there are also some free areas, left to the spontaneus organisation of people living there that can express their needs and hobbies sharing them together with their neighbors.
The facade is characterized by a volumetric skin that seem to cover the whole building, declaring its contemporary nature with its diversity but speaking the same language of the housing context in which is situated, with a grammar of identical openings in a regular syntax. This covering can be used to employ a layering that helps the energy management in an eco-sustainable direction. A warm white is the colour for this uniform skin that reflects light bringing it also to the lower levels of the edifice. The three-dimensional frame of each window creates a shadows kaleidoscope that gives dept to the prospects and draws always different compositions on the same canvas.A curved shape and a regular grid, a contemporary facade that respects the traditional bordering one, a public space that is not just an empty area between the constructions but is a place full of opportunities that brings life in the neighborhood: these dichotomies have been the guidelines for this project, as well as a private and public nature of the space studied together to give peolple not only a public space, not only housing, but a mixed reality where to spend different kind of time.