How Bamboo Connects this Apartment Buiding to its Brazilian Context While Promoting Sustainable Design

Project Details
  • Architects: Perkins&Will
  • Area: 5900 sqm
  • Year: 2023
  • Photographs: Nelson Kon
  • Project Team: Douglas Tolaine, Fernando Vidal, Lara Kaiser, Adriana Barbosa, Fernando Afonso, Tiago Ferrari, Gustavo Garrido, Fátima Oliveira e Renan Kadamoto
  • Contractor: Atmosfera Incorporadora
  • Lighting Consultants: MaisArq Arquitetura
  • Landscape: Cardim Arquitetura Paisagística
  • Structural Engineering : MRG
  • Foundation Engineer: APOIO
  • Electrical And Hydraulic Installations: SKK
  • City: Ubatuba
  • Country: Brazil

Bamboo forms the centerpiece for this apartment building in Brazil designed by the São Paulo studio of Perkins&Will.

The apartment building dubbed “Bambu” features a façade of vertical slats of treated bamboo, which can be reconfigured by the movement of articulated brises, becoming a living and dynamic element that confers a unique identity in dialogue with the local ecosystem.

As a low-cost natural material, bamboo thrives in the region, reducing the use of natural resources in transportation and handling, thereby decreasing the construction’s carbon footprint—an integral commitment of Perkins&Will to the future, ensuring low environmental impact.

“Bamboo works exceptionally well when applied to constructions due to its adaptability to diverse functions and forms within a development,”

Fernando Afonso, Project Designer, Perkins&Will São Paulo

Aesthetically pleasing and sustainable compared to other materials, bamboo is lightweight, durable, and fast-growing. In Brazil, its adaptability is particularly suitable for warm and humid climates, such as the coastal environment, contributing to thermal comfort. To further emphasize the choice of bamboo, the architectural team decided to apply a greenish copper-like coating on the façade, the entrance area, and the pool area, situated on the 20-meter-high rooftop with ocean views.

“By utilizing different shades of green and materials that transform over time, aging with remarkable beauty, we reinforce the concept of a contemporary bamboo grove. Both the façade and the expansive balconies with wooden planters serve as protective elements against solar exposure, reaffirming integration with the local landscape,” Tolaine adds.

Douglas Tolaine, Design Principal, Perkins&Will São Paulo

Situated on a 1,843 sqm plot of land, Bambu Atmosfera offers constant contact with nature both inside and outside the building. The “U”-shaped layout gives rise to a generous central plaza adorned with native species from the Atlantic Forest, connecting outdoor and indoor spaces with the local biome. The layout also ensures that all apartments have a view of the sea. The development comprises five apartment typologies ranging from 62 m² to 110 m² of private area.

Within the apartments, movable panels provide freedom and autonomy for residents while shielding interiors from direct sunlight. Cantilevered walkways, fire-galvanized steel railings, and the use of glass and metals create contrasts that further enhance the dialogue between diverse elements.

In addition to opting for sustainable raw materials, the environmental concern includes the installation of specific recycling bins and movable brise-soleil panels to regulate sunlight within the units, providing thermal comfort and reducing the use of artificial lighting. The elevation of only the ground floor was also undertaken to reduce the need for excavation.

Bambu Atmosfera marks the seventh development created by Perkins&Will São Paulo for Atmosfera Incorporadora, offering an enjoyable and astonishing experience to residents and visitors by creating an innovative yet harmonious visual aesthetic that blends seamlessly with the surrounding landscape.

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