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AICA Architecture Award 2016

Pedro Machado da Costa was awarded by AICA - The International Association of Art Critics, in the category of Architecture with the project Luís de Freitas Branco High School in Paço d'Arcos.

About Luís de Freitas Branco High School

Luís de Freitas Branco High School is located in a suburban area, in a territory previously occupied by agricultural land. Over the last few decades, the area has undergone major changes, with the construction of highways, residential buildings and shopping centers, which profoundly alter the landscape. The School, originally opened in the late 1970s, was built around prefabricated pavilions, set in a steep terrain. Over time, with the consolidation of the urban fabric, the perimeter of the school was surrounded by buildings, nullifying its relationship with the street. The accesses and the internal circulations were difficult, and the pavilions were obsolete. The project takes advantage of the structure of some of the pre-existing pavilions - which are remodeled to accommodate regular teaching classrooms - by reorganizing the school's functional structure around two outer spaces: the Patio and the Playground. The boundaries of these spaces are defined by two new buildings - the Central Building and the Pedagogical Building - that establish the internal and external circuits. Circulations are considered the most important spaces of the new school, and can be used as places to study, to eat, to rest. The main entrance of the complex is redesigned, in order to reestablish the relationship between the School and the street. With the completion of the renovation works, there is an improvement in the academic results, an exponential increase of the student community, and the use of the school by the community.

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