Silver Medal at the Architectural Biennale of the 5th Mexican Region
Colima, Mexico. September 17th 2011
It can be said that Casa Natalia is a briefing of the Agraz Arquitectos policies since it gathers the complying conditions for the firm’s main features. In an outstandingly oriented North-South terrain, a single longitudinal volume was designed, adding a limb to stabilize it. Then, as done before, the program begins by taking the cars out of the architectural scenery and placing them underground, which optimizes the surface area of the land piece.
And from this perspective, we repeat the placing of the basement a half level lower and lifting the house another half level, upcoming to a garage that shares the houseplant with service dormitory, laundry and equipment areas. From this point, a stairway goes upwards communicating all three stories of the house, with the same finishing of the rest of the areas, immediately leaving the garage environment.
As in other programs of the firm, the first flight of the stairway leads to the main door, which by being separated from the car entrance, leaves a front plaza for the house that dilutes all frontiers between urban and architectonic spaces.
Once inside the first floor, the living and dinning rooms offer an extension with an intimate family room and a terrace that can be the perfect social place due to its transforming possibilities: it can be fused or isolated from the rest of the precincts according to the needs and has an independent entrance.
This time, the kitchen becomes the gravity center of the project giving service to the dinning room as well as to the terrace, whereas the guest bathroom is located in a fair distance to give a comfortable privacy to its user. As a compliment of this houseplant, there is a guest room that is contemplated for the probable future dwelling of the house owners.
Configured for a family made up of the parents and an only daughter, the upper floor is in this sense different from others. There are only two rooms with atypical dimensions as for its spatial generosity, and a reading room, gymnasium and storage room that make up the most out of this small length terrain according to the client’s needs.
The vertical circulations that join all stories are contained in this added limb and where coated, in and outside, by metal and wood shutters designed by the artist Adrian Guerrero. These control light and privacy and allow a poetic dialogue between glass and steel.
Natalia House, a single volume with an added rib that ends up being the main figure of the program, a piece of architecture bounded to relate to the every day desires and traditions of this particular family.
Location: Guadalajara, Jalisco
Completion date: 2010
Juan Antonio Jaime
Site area: 642 M2
Construction area: 565 M2