Fornos de Algodres' municipality presented the need to intervene over a building classified has Municipal Market, an historical building in the centre of the village erected in 1902 which, although it has been serving that purpose over decades, it has also become the main arena for multiple events of different nature due to its centrality and size; the main goal was to endow the complex of conditions that could better serve the evolving needs of these events, namely concerts, fairs, exhibitions, etc.
During the mid 90's takes place an intervention in which the main guidelines consisted of creating a series of coverings to protect users from rain, as well as repaving and levelling the ground and enclosing each store hermetically.
Nowadays, and considering the harsh weather conditions of the region during Fall and Winter time, and given that some of the main events of the village take place during this time of the year, the building lacked conditions in order to host most of these activities: the enclosed stores had a lack of flexibility in use, the enclosed configuration had no connection with the surroundings and, mainly, the system of coverages did not provide for an efficient sheltering from the winds and the rain; furthermore, the building's considerable urban footprint was closed to the public when not in use, which rendered it useless in terms of public appropriation;
Due to the low budget available, and therefore using a more industrial approach to the elements that compose the entire project, our response focused on precisely targeting the main inadequacies while at the same time providing the complex with additional flexibility in uses and additional value; for this we took particular interest in the idea of "deconstruction as construction" as well as building flexibility by subtraction of potential conditioning elements.
The previous premises became the core of our approach and are vastly reflected on most of the final solutions. Removing as an act of building added value from the moment when, for example, eliminating some of the southern stores allowed for the establishment of a dynamic connection between the building and its surroundings/landscape; or when removing the northern boundary wall allowed for a new relationship between the upper northern street and the market, as well as the mountains in the background.
Alongside the above guidelines there was also an urge to restore some of the original building's characteristics which were felt as crucial to the importance of the building in the context of the village, particularly its reminiscence of a boulevard, which is intended to restore this privileged part of the village into a reborn centrality more capable of responding to communal use.
Urban project · renovation
Fornos de Algodres, Portugal
Miguel Roque, Paulo Vale Afonso, Rui Santos
Câmara Municipal de Fornos de Algodres
Edgar Brito (Structural Engineering) · Luís Oliveira (Electrical + Fire safety Design) · Celina Cabete (Water and Sanitation) · Bruno Henriques (HVAC)