The Registry Office Building in S. Vicente - Duarte Caldeira | architect
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The Registry Office Building in S. Vicente

The site of the registry office building in S. Vicente is on the north coast of the island of Madeira, on a deep valley flanked by green slopes, facing the sea. The mountain landscape and the overpowering orography dominate the surroundings. The park sits on one of the banks of the stream that runs through the valley, along a strip of land, which was probably once a riverbed. It is formed by a garden space with an underground car park, with a series of small shops on top. The arbitrary display of shops along the riverbank lends a sense of movement and establishes an analogy with the course of the stream. This idea refers both to the water flowing past and to the transformations it gradually introduces in and leaves imprinted on the site.

The new building is rectangular in shape and larger than the other volumes; it is set out in the location housing other constructions. As they take up the same setting, the old and the new buildings intersect each other and share the same space.

The registry office is single-storey, with a flat roof supported on a row of pillars placed around the perimeter, forming a peristyle. The glazed walls are set back from the aligned pillars and form one single inner space. Solid stone-lined volumes that penetrate the building’s boundaries break the transparency and lightness of the façades.

status – built
location – S. Vicente Madeira Portugal
year – 2011
architects – Duarte Caldeira, Filipe Clairouin Roberto Castro
photography – João Morgado