Editor’s pickHouse in La Cerdanya by Dom Arquitectura

14-09-2018
House in La Cedanya,douglas fir,pine,natural materials

Situated in Cerdanya’s area, the plot belonged in an old settlement where rehabilitation began 15 years ago. Currently, there are five houses on the site, which is bordered by astonishing views of the valley and the mountain range of the Cadí natural park. The project faced strict construction regulations governing the region and led the project towards the use of ‘traditional Cerdanya’ exterior materials.

(Image credit: Jordi Anguera)

The challenge was really to marry very traditional elements with a contemporary and cozy atmosphere harmoniously. As a start, the architect decided to build with a wooden structure, taking on a bioclimatic strategy to achieve an efficient and sustainable construction. Thanks to this system construction waste materials were reduced. 

The timber structure and the isolation of the volume pushed the design to rethink the hermetic enclosure, transpiration and air renovation. We accomplished that by a double flow heat recovery system. This system allows the house to ‘breathe’ and guarantees the continuous interior air salubrity. The wood is the main character throughout the house interiors. Fir planks clad walls and ceilings and natural oak floating parquet covers the floors, all with the same tones. The window and door frames are in pine wood with a mat finish and the interior cupboards, closets, doors, and the outside blinds are painted with an ecological and ‘breathable’ paint.

(Image credit: Jordi Anguera)

The walls’ and roofs’ structure is in pinewood. Therefore, by means of one material treated in different ways, we resolve most of the interior elements and finishes. The exterior wood is treated larch. The rest of the materials are the above-mentioned stone and clay tiles, as well as iron as a polyvalent material. Iron is used in the exteriors as the window frame and as roof gutter and in the interiors for some details such as lighting fixtures, the fireplace, stairs, and other finishes. Reinforced concrete is only used for the retaining walls and foundations.       

  (Image credit: Jordi Anguera)

 

(Image credit: Jordi Anguera)

 

(Image credit: Jordi Anguera)

In the traditional rural architecture of the region, the houses face outwards towards the natural landscape as the owners need not see the areas where they had been working all day. This project meets the objective by closing itself towards the street and the immediate north-facing neighbour.At the same time, it wants to open up to the garden and the views. In this manner, both interior and exterior areas can enjoy the natural landscape that surrounds the house. The design also imitates the traditional act of gathering around the fire, as a moment of family togetherness, which was also the core design concept. The wide, open space of the ‘day area’ also can function as smaller semi-enclosed corners through the strategic placing of the furniture to create cozy atmospheres typical of the mountains. The couch that frames the fireplace, the bench, the table, the kitchen isle, but also defines the rhythm within the diverse spaces through a visually continuous space.