Sunday, May 27, 2012

Our last open working day coming up...

As our last Saturday was changed for Monday, this working week started on Tuesday in the building with NCREP. Now the structure is finally secured for us to enter, and at last we were able to see the roof construction and visit the basement. The roof was more or less like we expected, but unfortunately in a quite poor state. NCREP will do some calculations to we whether we are able to keep in or if we have to replace it. Some parts will have to be replaced anyway, as there are some heavy damages caused by moist in some of the supports. The basement was a dark and smelly place, and hopefully we manage to get in some new fresh air and life...
Finally the mysterious roof structure is revealed...
Discovering the roof and the basement with NCREP
Later on Tuesday we got a visit from professor Jorge Vaz from ESAP, with whom we discussed details and technical solutions. This was of great help, a very efficient and valuable session. We are looking forward to the next one, saving up questions!
Details are discussed with professor Vaz
Finally, Tuesday was rounded off with the architects of the Arrebita team. Helping us with solutions here and there, and discussing our submission papers. Accompanied with pizza and chit-chat, this was a nice informal working discussion. It is great to be a part of the Arrebita family!

On Wednesday we had a tutoring with professora Teresa Fonseca. It has been a while since the last one, but it is always good to know that we are heading in the right direction. Adjustments were made and problems solved. Some new problems also tend to be revealed, but they will probably be solved during the next days. Hopefully...

The same day we also had a workshop with Joana Leandro Vasconcelos from in.vitro atelier de arquitectura. She walked us through the entire process of a project in Portugal, describing all the fases, submissions that have to be done, and what we are handing in next week. A helpful insight to the process!

Rest of the week was spent just working on. A lot of aspects have been well discussed, but we are now really looking forward to the meeting with Magnetic fields on Monday. Discussing the energy solutions of the building is now getting crucial.
Exploring details
As the building was secured, we could also get a professional geometrical survey. We were lucky to have Paulo Sousa helping us with this, and now we finally have accurate drawings. We might not have time to adjust the drawing work we've done so far before the next open working day, but it will be done eventually. Luckily the differences were not too severe!

And now we have only few days left for our next open working day. We are looking forward to this last presentation and discussion. We are finishing drawings for this, and at the same time for submitting the project at the municipality. Lists of drawings are made, and remade. 
One of many lists...
We would like to post here some of our recent drawings for you to see before the last round of discussions, but right now they are all more or less work in progress, so we will post after Wednesday instead. Nevertheless, we would like to see as many as possible this last Open Working day! Come and help us finalize this project!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Work, work and an important visitor

The days are going by so quickly, and in all the intense working the blog ends up somehow neglected. To sum up last week, we were working on with ideas and discussions from the last open working day. We got a lot of good input, and details are changed, changed back and discussed again. Sometimes it feels like we are going backwards, but finally the project keeps on improving.

We promised you last week to show pictures of our models. Here are both pictures of working models, and the models made for the last open working day. 
Working models
The entire building
1:50 of the house

Model of the box
Most of the time this week, we worked on our own, without workshops or meetings. Still the week passed quickly. We had an afternoon meeting with the Arrebita engineers, and this was a great help to reach some conclusions about technical aspects. But there is still a lot left, and the days till next open working day will be busy!
On the Friday we had a nice break from the work and Ricardo Lemos from Fundacão Talento showed us around at the Palacio das Artes. Thank you for that!  
With Ricardo at Palacio das Artes
On Saturday our little studio was filled with people; Arrebitas, partners, journalists, and last but not least; the secretary of state of youth Alexandre Mestre. We were honoured that he wanted to visit us and here what we are working with. The secretary of state is invited back in august to see the final presentation before the working starts on site.
Visit from the secretary of state
Eva's drawing for our guest
And finally we had some weekend time. We had a great trip visiting the Lands of Eva, Viana do Castelo, Ponte do Lima, Caminha, markets, climbing a mountain(by car), having a fantastic Sunday lunch, seeing Spain, the ocean and a beautiful scenery, inspecting a home made hydro power plant and the future generation of Portuguese movie makers. Great weekend, great hosts! Thank you!
In Viana do Castelo

Monday, May 14, 2012

Second Open Working Day

This has been a busy week. At least half of it was really busy. With the open working day coming up, we had a lot to prepare for the Wednesday. We build two models, one of the entire house in 1:50 and one of the box in 1:10. Pictures of these will follow.

The open working day was a great success! We presented our work and thoughts so far, and it raised some good discussions. For those of you who could not be there on Wednesday we put here our presentation.

Ground floor and new mezzanine
First and second floor
View from apartment on second floor
Flexibility for a different use on first floor
Open working space on ground floor
Also NCREP, Dimscale and Magnetic fields presented their view on the project so far. Tiago Ilharco from NCREP had a very informative presentation about the statical consequences and possible solution in our project. Paulo Sarabanda and Rui Rigueira from Magnetic fields presented different possible solutions concerning energy supply and savings, and solutions for ventilation and heating. It is good to have them on board, and we are looking forward to learn more from them about the technical aspects and consequences of our designs. Finally, Dimscale presented a their thoughts upon materials, and adapting solutions to the material dimensions. 
Discussing with Dimscale
After the general discussion, we also had a workshop with Dimscale about cost management and quantity surveying. But interesting discussions are luckily difficult to stop, and a lot of the afternoon was also used to discuss alternatives for the box. New alternatives for materials where put on the table, like polycarbonate. We want to give the box a touch of something extra. Finishing the day with a toast to the great day, and for the birthday of Artur. Dimscale also has a great blog following our project. Worth visiting!
Debriefing the day
Thursday was spent in Matosinhos with Ricardo at INFOR. In addition to help us with problems we have ran into with ArchiCad so far, we had a great introduction to Artlantis. This was really inspiring, and you should all look forward to our next presentation! And with the end of the day spent at the beach, Thursday was truly great. 

And after a full week, Friday was a day for brainstorming over the discussions and input we have had during the week. A good start of the next period of working. 
And then came the weekend, this time with a warming sun. Go Porto!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Our first designs

Things are happening quickly these days. We started designing the transformation only two weeks ago, and on the open working day on Wednesday we will present a project. This week we had a new tutoring with professora Teresa. Useful as always. We realized that the lack of precise measurements of the building is getting very problematic, so with the help of Daniel we tried to get a feeling of the true sizes. But with this old and irregular building, it proved difficult. We are really waiting for the people who are going to secure the building to give us the opportunity to see the yet undiscovered parts and send some professional measures. On Thursday we had a skype conference with Dimscale, discussing our draft project. And on Friday we went to see NCREP for the same reason. Both very interesting and useful discussions! We are looking forward to more discussions on the open working day.

Discussing with NCREP in their nice office
On Wednesday we sent a draft project to some of our partners, Dimscale, NCREP and Magnetic Fields. There is still a lot to be done, but it is good to discuss the ideas we have so far with our consultants and experts. We will also post the pages we sent here on the blog, to keep you updated. And feel free to comment or give us tips! A lot has already happened since Wednesday, but better late than never. We want to give you a feeling of where we are heading, so here we put some simple drawings of the existing and the new, and some principles describing some of our concept and challenges to our consultants. The exciting continuation you should come and see on Wednesday!