Truss House / Roberto Moita Arquitetos
Photographs: Maíra Acayaba, Roberto Moita
Manufacturers: Isover, Knauf, Alcoa, Amazon Aço, Brastemp, Cerâmicas Atlas, Deca, Gerdau, Guardian, Mobiliário, Portela Woods, Portobello, Suvinil
Arquiteto Roberto Moita
Text description provided by the architects. This House stems from our experiences and research on contemporary architecture and construction in Brazil and the Amazon.
The functional program presented the challenge of creating a welcoming environment for a vacation home for a young family on a tight budget.
The main strategy of the project was to significantly reduce the impacts of construction on the environment, starting from the architectural design, then to the choice of construction methods, techniques, and the organization of the construction site.
The single compact block located in the southern portion of the lot is designed to protect the small forest, and an elevated patio for the swimming pool extends to the north.
The gentle sloping piece of land with sandy soil and many trees led us to organize the program in three levels: one for leisure, leveled with the sidewalk, an upper level for the private areas, and a lower level for guests.
The leisure and private areas were arranged facing the forest, taking advantage of the northeast prevailing winds, creating a partially covered integrated communal space that benefits from the forest and the path of the sun and moon.
A large roof made of thermal sandwich panels with generous eaves provides the necessary protection from the rain and the Amazon sun. The fallen leaves on the forest floor serve as a low-maintenance permeable ground cover while also acting as a natural fertilizer for the trees.
The construction technique combines steel, wood, and concrete. Two large steel trusses support the elevated prism containing the bedrooms, which spans 14 meters, allowing great spatial continuity between interior and exterior spaces and providing flexible floor plans.
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.
We were particularly fascinated by this poetic idea of bringing together traditional and industrial technologies, establishing a tectonic, constructive, and tactile connection between them to create a patchwork that reflects the spirit of Manaus, a city that is a major industrial center but also located in the middle of the world’s largest rainforest.