URLO Studio

URLO Studio

Quito, EC



OLVIA is located on a plot of special relevance for the neighborhood of Bellavista in Quito since it’s on the main access street and has a prominent slope that helps to enhance the position of the building in its surroundings.

The morphological complexity of the terrain and its pronounced topography made the boundary between the building and the public space one of the determining elements in designing the project. To provide a correct solution and avoid the creation of walls as enclosures, the volume that was proposed opens up to the public space as it descends along the perimeter of the property.

In this strategy, the pedestrian access was located in the highest point of the lot, and the access to the parking lots was located in the lowest point. Between these points there are two retail spaces and a small plaza that promotes sporadic encounters between neighbors.

To guarantee adequate conditions for cross ventilation and natural lighting throughout the project, a central courtyard was introduced. The courtyard articulates the two main bars in which the different types of apartments are found. It also generates a more pleasant visual experience for residents as they circulate from the main lobby to their own home. The humid areas of each apartment (bathrooms, laundry rooms) open up to the interior façade of the building which creates cross ventilation circuits and facilitates the natural lighting of these spaces that are usually located in residual areas, significantly improving their habitability.

As the building grows in height, it pivots on a central axis located in the main corner of the property, generating a series of superimposed volumes that create terraces. These protruding volumes house the common areas of each apartment and are characterized by the large windows that allow residents to enjoy panoramic views of the city.

The triangular geometry of the lot meant a significant increase in the proportion of the project's façade. For this reason, and because of its prominent position in the neighborhood, the conception of the façade could not merely be a compositional exercise, but rather one that also took into consideration the architectural heritage of the neighborhood. The façade also displays technological and constructive innovation in order for the project to be an example of architectural advancement in the city.

After researching various solutions, a facade system made of lightened concrete pigmented using natural oxides was developed. This system made it possible to design panels of up to 3.15 meters in height with different widths and geometries that allowed for an adequate constructive response to a highly morphologically complex envelope.

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Status: Built
Location: Quito, EC
Firm Role: Architectural Designer
Additional Credits: Collaborator:
Iker Gómez

Electrical Engineering:

Mechanical Engineering:

Estructural Engineering:
Juan Carlos Garcés

Clemencia Echevarria