Laneway Patio House

This laneway patio house, situated in the Poblenou district of Barcelona, was built within the envelope of an existing decrepit shed demolished afterwards, keeping only the street façade and one structural bay. Due to a maximum permissible building height of only a single story and a very narrow, deep lot (approximately 5 x 25 m) between party walls, spaces were organized around two outdoor patios –a major and a minor one– such that each would have access to light, air, and views. To avoid an excessively long corridor, the major patio was positioned within the house rather than at the very rear of the lot, where an independent bedroom suite separated from the rest of the house was placed. 

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The spaces of the house follow a liner sequence beginning with a street-fronting home-office that doubles as an entry area and guest room, then a bedroom, bathroom, and kitchen around the minor patio, and finally a living-dining room facing the major patio. A second bedroom with an en-suite bath is situated across from it at the very rear of the property; an independent construction accessed by a covered outdoor walkway. A stair ascends from the major patio to a roof terrace above the house. 

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The glulam timber structure of the house, exposed in ceilings as an architectural feature, helps to minimize loads on the foundations and to maximize eco-efficiency. Thermochip sandwich panels with concrete slope-formation, an EPDM membrane beneath a concrete protective layer, and an elevated wooden deck complete the flat roof construction. 

Architectural design: ArqEstructura (Rafael Gómez-Moriana, Carmela Torró Micó, Andrea Barrera).

Structural design and calculations: Carmela Torró Micó.

Contractor: Walden Eco-construction

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About Rafael Gomez-Moriana

Architect, educator and writer. Partner at ArqEstructura. Adjunct Associate Professor at the University of Calgary. Blogger at criticalista.com.

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