Back in 2010, MAD Architects won a competition to adapt a 1970s commercial courtyard into a deluxe, residential complex in Rome. Four years of design development and council hearings later, the project now prepares to enter the construction phase, and 71 Via Boncompagni will become MAD’s first realized project in Europe.
Located on a street corner in the heart of the city, the existing courtyard attached to an early 20th century chapel posed the primary challenge of blending two independent structures into a collective living complex. Led by Director Ma Yansong, the studio will remove the existing façades—being careful to retain the original, structural framework—and develop 145 living units.
Post-realignment, the 28.5-meter-tall (93.5-foot) concrete building will adopt a bookshelf-like façade, as custom units of varying layouts and sizes will be intricately inserted into the structure’s eight-level framework.
This will blur the boundary between building and street: “the new design peels away bulky façades and replaces them with a more open, transparent scheme,” the architects said in a release.
In MAD’s proposal, the units wraps around a central courtyard, with large windows that bring natural sunlight into the living areas and offer views of both the garden and courtyard. The existing modern garden will be reworked into a more abstract terrace, featuring a reflecting pond.
Through its adaptive rebuild, the firm hopes to revitalize the traditional neighborhood with natural and open elements. Construction is slated to conclude in 2017.
More on 71 Via Boncompagni, including additional renderings and project credits, in the ARCHITECT Project Gallery here.