THE DOOR AND THE THRESHOLD
¨I think you should always find where the limit is in relation to the context, to be able to articulate how you want the space to interact with the viewer¨ Richard Serra.
We believe that the first and fundamental reason for being architecture is the positive transformation of a certain place. On this occasion, we understand it in a silent way, improving and activating the areas of greatest interest in the context, offering a kind of new spaces in the limits.
The exercise is located on the property related to the work of Mario Roberto Álvarez for the Paraná River Subfluvial Tunnel. To project is to investigate, and therefore, our first action was summarized in an investigation in the memory of the context, in order to recognize, rewrite and highlight the history that built this magnificent work. During the course of our little research, a series of material images invaded our memory, and defined an atmosphere to be built. They configured an essence. In this way, we find in the guidelines created by the master, an optimistic path to follow. We understood the formal will of the same, and therefore, we gave all the prominence to the existing buildings.
Known a first construction, that of our own memory. Two intervention areas are located, defined by two architectural concepts that always refer to the limit, which deal with the clear construction of the edge. The Door and the Threshold.
These areas are based on two twin actions, and therefore, almost identical, almost the same. For this, a construction system is used by means of elements of tremendous material density, which we inherit from the construction of the previous work, the Subfluvial Tunnel. Four powerful concrete walls define the East and North edge of the property to act. The exercise makes use of the powerful formwork walls in plank wood, in order to clearly configure the edge in contact with the existing topography, as well as the one that resolves the transition towards the ends that delimit the immediate context.
On these powerful walls, a series of beams also made of reinforced concrete bring before us the constructive memory of the tunnel. The beams guide and order the space. At the edges against the topography, they are embedded in the wall and build a continuous link, a kind of static resolution of the construction against the ground. In a different way, and supported on the wall, these beams extend towards the limit described above, guiding the entry of light into both buildings. The space is flooded and thus the constructed matter is more present through the powerful definition of light and dark in matter.
Having already known the configuration actions of the exercise in its immediate landscape, the proposal resolves both buildings in the same and different way. The Interpretation Center uses a “Timbó” wooden box [typical of the island vegetation] to organize the space. It includes the reception and toilets, the uses that offer service to the space. In the same way, the auditorium building will be executed with the same design mechanism, and will configure an empty space by interrupting the beam system in it. On this space a metallic pavilion of a tectonic nature will appear, and from there, both edges of the Paraná will be seen. Back inside the building, and at the end of it, already against the ground, the auditorium will be included inside the second “Timbó” box. Program, material and construction converge in the definition of this second building.
Finally, a double tactic will be used to define this architectural space in fluid matter. The formwork of boards used, configures a rough and natural appearance to the outside. This, gets in touch with the immediate context, remembering the woody nature of the formwork itself. When meeting the vitreous thresholds, on both edges of the Interpretation Center, a formwork using phenolic panel is used, which delves into the transforming capacity of the constituent material itself.
The Door and the Threshold is an optimistic architectural proposal, a framework between both edges, which with a clear vocation for transformation offers a re-reading of this fantastic place.