“Stop doing ugly buildings” | Aldo G. Facho Dede

Catasus House – Coderch – Sitges (Catalunya) 1956

A few days ago waiting to realize a step in the offices of Particular Works, I heard accidentally a few persons who were commenting on the condition of the local architecture. They were speaking on the reticence of the neighbors to accepting new buildings since often they are “uglier” than the traditional houses built in these lots. I caught the phrase (happiness according to these persons for an announcer of radio) since it seemed to me it summarizes what happens often in our cities, already be for excess or absence of entelequia in the process of design.

As I commented in the entry “Modern Architecture for a Postmodern company” what gives sense to our trade it is the need of the persons to live a space, all the intellectual processes developed in the time of our profession always have (or they should) had in it counts the inhabitant as the first and final sustenance of the elucubraciones. It happens that it departs from the architecture that it tried to overcome the Modern one, on not having been able to support in the strict field of the project (structure, function and form) the reasons that should justify the change, it had to resort to a foreign territory, where the arguments proyectuales were losing validity before arguments of subjective origin and up to individual. There began then an escalation of “styles” in which each one was claiming the force with sustenances more and more searched carefully. Before the architectural fact was never any more an isolated object and before the cities never suffered any more the supposed entelequias of our couples.

Evidently, when this “only” architecture is taken as an image by others that try to reproduce her, the disasters happen proyectuales that we see often in our cities. To try to explain a house with metaphors, dreams and concepts it is like to go to a restaurant and that instead of the plate of food serve a manuscript you. The abysmal difference is that as much in the second case you will fight with the metre and will look for another place, happening in the first one that for when des account of the magnitude of her defrauds little his margin you will still have to move back.

When we get angry because an acquaintance decides to call a major teacher of work or a main bricklayer to design and to construct, we receive almost always as response that ” the architects are expensive, they are for things luxuries “. We have lost great part of our professional reputation, at least between the common people. Often they call us because the municipal step demands us, but soon they deliver the control of the work to the persons who consider “know”: the executors (bricklayers, builders, etc.) we have an arduous work at the time of demonstrating the validity of our intervention.

A project does not stop being “good” because it does not take certain components. If we as professionals do not manage to deliver a useful product to our clients, to the measure of his needs and possibilities, we are we the wrong ones and not they the ignoramuses. If decorative elements are scorned for the problem being considered to be “expensive” it is not for that the client does not value the quality of our work, but in that for our disability proyectual have included components that on not having been able to be sustained in the set of the project (structure, function, form) happen to be insignificant “accessories”.

For a time I planned as professional goal the power to attend to any type of client, seeking always to overcome his expectations without it implies resigning me to my beginning proyectuales. Always I have in mind the houses Ballvé and Catasus de Coderch as models of Modern very different Architecture in resultant formally and constructive technology, but similar in the approximation proyectual.

Then let’s stop doing buildings “ugly” or lacking in quality, let’s take again the course of our profession: the discussions must not be in the plane of the desires (concepts, ideas) or only in the profitability of the emprendimiento, but in the impact in the city and the value for his inhabitants.

Aldo G. Facho Dede · Architect  Author of the Blog Habitar: Ambiente+Arquitectura+Ciudad

Lima · january 2013

Arquitecto-urbanista, docente-investigador, convencido de que nuestro país necesita desarrollar sus ciudades en base a modelos de planificación urbana estratégicos y adaptativos, que partan desde las personas y el ambiente, y que busquen la multiplicación del bienestar y su equitativa distribución.

Arquitecto-Urbanista por la Universidad Nacional de Ingeniería (UNI-FAUA), título homologado en Argentina. Magister en Desarrollo Sustentable por la Universidad de Lanús (UNLA-FLACAM, Argentina). Estudios de Doctorado en la Universidad Politécnica de Cataluña (España). Experiencia profesional en Urbanismo, Planificación Urbana y Arquitectura, desarrollada en las ciudades de Lima-Perú, La Plata-Argentina y Barcelona-España. Ha participado en el desarrollo de proyectos y consultorías para Perú, Argentina, España, México y Brasil. Ha ganado concursos de arquitectura y diseño urbano en Perú y Argentina. Es docente del área de Urbanismo de la USAT y miembro del Consejo Consultivo de la Escuela de Arquitectura de la UDEP. Es socio de FDARQ Urbanismo + Arquitectura y editor del blog HABITAR

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