San Bernardo Apartments
Project by Josep Miàs & Rafael Fernández del Amo
The project describes the redistribution of the existing housing block between San Bernardo and del Norte streets, in Madrid. This building had a ground floor with two shops and an entrance hall; a basement; and five floors with two apartments per floor; 20 apartments in total. Above the fifth floor, a machine room and the necessary spaces for the lift machinery is found.
Our project proposed to maintain the whole building but changing the space distribution from the first floor to the fifth: four apartments in the first, second and third floor; three apartments in the fourth floor and two in the fifth floor. This proposal involves changing the way of going upstairs and downstairs, in order to make the apartment entrance central, without changing its location next to the courtyard. The idea is to put together the courtyard, the lift and the stairs. This proposal would make much more luminous access points without taking light from the rooms with neighbour the courtyard. In addition, according to the original 1907 project, modern auxiliary constructions as sheds are demolished, in order to recover the original geometry.
The essence of the project is residential use intensification through the division of the apartments: from two to four in each floor. The size of the old apartments (150 m2) is big enough for its division, especially regarding to the dwelling problem nowadays. The result is 60 m2 apartments with windows looking to the street. For this reason, it is necessary to flip the existing stairs so as to change the landing from San Bernardo Street façade to a more central position, giving a more appropriate entrance to the four apartments.
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