MNGB House | VAUMM arquitectura y urbanismo

The project, situated in an urban plot of approximately 1000m2 with a steep slope and an existing building, consists on inserting a new dwelling. Both houses share common areas but will be inhabited by two different owners. The owner of the current house owns 50% of the plot and the building, and our client is the owner of the other half of the plot and the right to build the new house. Both must agree on the architecture to live together without interference.


The local plan states that the building must meet a two-family residential typology. Strictly this model assumes two housing in a single volume. Accepting this premise means joining to the existing building, involving the views and the living space.

Owing to the fact that both buildings should be understood as a unit for regulatory purposes, the strategy is to link them physically through a series of common elements consisting of a shared courtyard and the upper terraces.

The proposal, therefore, focuses in the section. It redefines the different levels of the existing house. The basement becomes ground level and so on. In this way, both buildings are included in the allowed profile and a unitary piece.

Under these conditions, the new building is conceived as an element adapted to the topography that somehow extends from the existing building, moving towards the end of the lot and descending to a lower level.

The house has a basement, ground and first floors. This first floor is materialized in a volume that emerges laterally on the roof of the existing dwelling. Between both houses there is no material distinction. An intermediate area that distances both houses is created by the fold of the roof and its vegetable treatment, always allowing views over the open space.

The plan of the building is organized around an interior courtyard which allows wide sights of the interior spaces. In this way, the dwelling opens to the exterior space and amplifies its size while maintaining a high degree of privacy. On the contrary, the dining room and living room open to the landscape.

The architectural proposal negotiates an agreement between the two owners and between them and the urban legislation, in which the proposal flexibly fits. The resulting architecture is the materialization of this agreement.


Work: MNGB House
Authors: VAUMM arquitectura y urbanismo [Iñigo García Odiaga, Javier Ubillos, Jon Muniategiandikoetxea, Marta Alvarez and Tomás Valenciano] + Patxi Ecenarro
Location: Aiete, Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
Year: 2013
Cost: 290.000 €
Surface: 340 m2
Technical Architect: Julen Rozas
Client: Private
Photography: Aitor Ortiz

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Filed under: arquitectura, obras, vivienda unifamiliar

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