lisbon-based architecture firm ARX portugal has completed an extension on the ‘ílhavo maritime museum’. the renovation–a refurbishment of an old school–sees the addition of a codfish aquarium that connects the existing two buildings on site. the placement of the supplementary structure relates to the already established context of the research centre, and aids in defining its immediate public spaces.
situated among the context of small residences, the ‘ílhavo maritime museum’ is shaped by the interstices of its urban domestic fabric, establishing a new public domain for the city’s inhabitants. in its presence, it breaks into two horizontally overlapping bodies, defined by material — a white concrete volume emerges from the ground and sets the basis for defining a square, while a floating black body of metal scales is elevated above this plaza.
elevated above a plaza between the two volumes, the extension establishes a new public domain for visitors
visitors circulate through the main internal programs via a spiraling ramp that is suspended over the main tank that offers an immersive experience of the featured cod habitat. an informal auditorium provides extensive visibility of the aquarium, and marks a pause for contemplation of the species presented. the technical components of the extension are housed in the basement of the space in order to guarantee a subliminal operation of all life support systems, quality of seawater, control of air temperature.
the structures are defined by material–white concrete and metal scales
approach and external circulation
aerial view of the addition which houses a cod aquarium
spiral ramp which indicates visitor circulation throughout the interior
location: ílhavo, portugal
owner: ílhavo municipality
architecture: ARX portugal, arquitectos lda., josé mateus, nuno mateus
team: ricardo guerreiro, fábio cortês, ana fontes, baptiste fleury, luís marques, sofia raposo, sara nieto, héctor bajo
area: 2,500 sqm
structures: TAL projectos, projectos, estudos e serviços de engenharia lda.
electrical and telecommunications planning, security planning: AT, serviços de engenharia electrotécnica e electrónica lda.
mechanical planning: PEN, projectos de engenharia lda.
sanitary planning: atelier 964
photography: FG + SG – fotografia de arquitectura (© fernando guerra + sérgio guerra )