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Brazilian Houses: 6 Residences With a Mixed Structure

Jul 12, 2023Jul 12, 2023

There are several constructive technologies to configure the structural system of a building. From the 1960s onwards, the adoption of techniques that enabled the interaction between different materials became increasingly common, diversifying the design language and seeking the main advantages each element has to face certain situations. Over the years, some mix concrete, wood, stones or steel.

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Combining structures brings different benefits to the construction: facilitating its execution, reducing sections of structural elements, improving fire resistance and rigidity, and reducing weight, cost and amounts of waste. These facts can also come together when thinking about the aesthetics of your project. To illustrate it, we selected six contemporary Brazilian houses that adopt mixed structures as a solution.

"A timber and steel mixed structure was combined with a color range that emphasizes the structural elements. Vivid blue details frame the structure, and the closure blinds are translucent, exploring the amplitude and integration with the garden."

"The structural system of both buildings is composed of two parts that were built independently: the exposed concrete structure and solid brick walls – the "core"- and the glued laminated wood (Glulam) roof. The aim was to combine local labor and traditional building materials with a large lightweight structure made from reforestation wood, remotely prefabricated, and assembled on site."

"A load-bearing masonry box made of concrete blocks contains the staircase and the bathrooms while also supporting one end of the steel structure, which is supported by a pair of concrete pillars on the other end. Wood is used on the exterior walls of the elevated prism, the floor of the private areas, and the decks and ceilings of the leisure areas."

"The construction had a relatively low budget, R $ 1,000.00 per m², and a duration of 100 days, the thermoacoustic tile was an economical solution that provides comfort to the residents, in addition to being very light, it allows the structure of the the house is very delicate and simple, so, in order to have a more practical, economical and fast work, a mixed structure, foundation and pillars in reinforced concrete, and roof structure in metallic structure were adopted."

"This is not a delicate site plan, no. The house does not "rest" on the land, it does not touch the earth with pilotis, and it is not structurally brash. It is a blunt site plan, embedded in the slope, blooming from the soil. (...) We added only what was necessary to make this ruin a home. And in opposition to what belongs to the land, the stones, and everything placed on the ruin that came from outside, using what is most modern and rational in the civil construction industry: cross-laminated timber (CLT) and glass. The nature of these materials reclaims their positions in the structure. "

"The house was designed in mixed structure. Retaining walls in reinforced concrete and 2 gables also specifically serve for adjustment of some quotas of the land and anchoring to the metal frame, hoisted on the trees."

ArchDaily Team Diogo Simões