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Old October 15th, 2013, 07:06 AM   #101
Jasper90
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History of architecture - Contemporary popular housing by Bortoluzzi, and Casa della Marinarezza

2) New social houses by Franco Bortoluzzi, 1987-1990

These popular houses were built after the demolition of poorly designed St Mark's institute, built in 1937 to recover the homeless and as a station for waste disposal boats cleaning.
It's part of the area chosen for Le Corbusier's proposed hospital, as they lie on the extreme north of Venice.

These houses have a very strong visual link with Venice: the chimneys and the arcades towards the water strongly resemble House of Marinarezza, which was built in 1335 for marinai (sailors) who had distinguished themselves in service for the city. It's therefore probably one of the earliest examples of social housing in the world, and it also shows the modular repeated structure, which is the standard in social houses nowadays. The current fašade was built in 1645-1661 by linking the three different buildings with arcades.
Until 1936 Marinarezza houses faced a few shipyards, which were replaced by the street called Riva dell'Impero (Imperial Waterfront). The current name is Riva dei Sette Martiri (Seven Martyrs Waterfront), honouring 7 people who were killed by fascism after being accused of a murder which was actually an accidental drowning of a drunk guy.



image hosted on flickr

Sacca San Gerolamo di stevecadman, su Flickr

This picture was taken by a train approaching Venice, as it's the first glimpse of the city you can get when arriving

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Sacca S.Girolamo di Deep Calm, su Flickr

Here's a better picture: http://flic.kr/p/dv5vRK

This is the sight from behind an arcade (my picture)



And this is Casa della Marinarezza, just to make a comparison (N.B.: the New Houses and Casa della Marinarezza lie on two opposite sides of the city)

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Riva dei Sette Martiri di tnachtrab, su Flickr

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Riva dei Sette Martiri di pviolet, su Flickr

Bonus picture: boat petrol station close to the New Houses

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Petrol Station di usf1fan2, su Flickr
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Old October 15th, 2013, 09:05 AM   #102
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Quote:
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Oh, that's really good for a modern intervention. Do these chimneys serve for some practical purpose or are they just decorations?
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Old October 16th, 2013, 09:26 PM   #103
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Well i believe this is the practical reason:



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Old October 16th, 2013, 11:06 PM   #104
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I guess I have a question. Even it it's mediterranean it might be quite cold in the winter, I guess so people should have some source of heating.. What is the common type of the heating in Venice? Is there a centralised heating with some large boiler house for entire sity or every house have it's own source? If everyone is heating his house separately, do you burn gas, wood or electricity usually?
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Old October 16th, 2013, 11:48 PM   #105
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Ho do you deal with moisture in buildings ?
You must have a lot of mold inside...
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Old October 17th, 2013, 12:39 AM   #106
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roman_P View Post
Oh, that's really good for a modern intervention. Do these chimneys serve for some practical purpose or are they just decorations?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fab87 View Post
Well i believe this is the practical reason:
Fireplaces are the historical reason for all those chimneys, as coal and wood were burned in most households as a source for heating.

However fireplaces are banned in Venice nowadays due to safety reasons (fire hazard, because houses are close to each other and contain a lot of wood).
Therefore most chimneys have been recycled to contain burned gas from heating, cooking and domestic hot water.

I guess the chimneys on the new houses were directly designed for gas burners, even if they also have a decorative purpose.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Index_LT View Post
I guess I have a question. Even it it's mediterranean it might be quite cold in the winter, I guess so people should have some source of heating.. What is the common type of the heating in Venice? Is there a centralised heating with some large boiler house for entire sity or every house have it's own source? If everyone is heating his house separately, do you burn gas, wood or electricity usually?
Hi!
It's true, despite the Mediterranean the weather can be very cold in winter and we often have 2-3 week of -5 or -10 ║C minimum temperature (24 to 16 F).

In Italy we tend to use natural gas as much as we can because it's quite cheap, whereas electricity is very expensive in comparison to the EU average.

So every household has its own gas burner, which is used for hot water and heating. Sometimes you can have a single gas burner for an entire building, but it's quite rare because it's difficult to lay all the additional pipes in a historical building. I don't think there is any teleriscaldamento (centralised gas burner which heats an entire neighborhood), whereas this is very common in other cities like Milan, Turin and Brescia.

Gas is also used for cooking, as Italian households only have 3 kW of electrical power (5 kW if you have air conditioning). We use electricity for lighting and general electrical appliances, but we tend to save it when possibile (e.g.: line drying of clothes is much more common than clothes dryer).
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Old October 17th, 2013, 11:35 AM   #107
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District heating (teleriscaldamento) is becoming common in many italian cities. Although it is impossible to introduce it in historical Venice, it could be introduced to Mestre and Marghera, the two inland districts of Venice (where most of the venetians live).
There are plans to use the heat produced in some factories in Marghera to do so.

Heating is not an option in northern Italy from October to April. In the apartment block where I live (100km from Venice), central heating was switched on two weeks ago for the winter season, as outside temperatures dropped to +8░.
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Old October 20th, 2013, 05:44 AM   #108
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Oldest building in Venice?

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What is the oldest standing building/structure in Venice?
I did some research, but the question doesn't really have an answer.

We traditionally consider the Church of San Giacometto in Rialto ("little" Saint James) the oldest church of the city. It's said to date back to the year 421 A.D., when Venice was founded. But the present church was built in 1152 and the fašade is from the 14th century.



Another very ancient church in Venice is San Nicol˛ dei Mendicoli (Saint Nicholas of the Beggars). It was founded in the 7th century but it was replaced by a Romanic-style church in the 12th century. As usual, it was modified in the following centuries (e.g.: I guess the side entrance is from the 17th century).

The church was restored in the '70s thanks to the money from Venice in Peril fund: the floor was elevated in order to save the church from high tide, which often covered the very low floor.

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San Nicol˛ dei Mendicoli di Egon Abresparr, su Flickr

image hosted on flickr

VENICE di patstmand, su Flickr


However I can't give you a precise answer on what's the oldest building in Venice. Virtually no building was left largely unaltered from ancient times to present day. I'm sorry
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Old October 20th, 2013, 06:58 AM   #109
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raf124 View Post
Ho do you deal with moisture in buildings ?
You must have a lot of mold inside...
There are a few engineeral solutions to the problem of moisture in Venice.
Without any treatment, salty water gets drained up by porous bricks until they reach saturation. Evaporation occurs, leaving salt cristals inside the brick, which cause damage by expansion.

The effect looks like white "sweat" from the walls, and water can rise as high as 2 metres fronm the ground due to capillarity.

image hosted on flickr

sea salts di InkSpot's Blot, su Flickr

image hosted on flickr

Worn brickwork di Graham Dash, su Flickr

The main solution is quite simple, and it's called taglio dei muri (Cut of walls). It can be physical or chemical.

- Physical cut of walls: you horizontally cut the wall and insert a layer of another material. It can be stone, metal, fibreglass, polymers or whatever stops the ascent of water inside the bricks.
- Chemical cut of walls: the principle is the same but no actual cut is carried out. You just make some injections of resins which fill the pores on a horizontal line, with the same result of the physical cut but lower costs.

This system was already used in Venice in ancient times, but the physical cut has often been submerged by water, due to the rise in water level, and therefore needs to be repeated.

Some other additional measures should be considered for humidity control:
- Removal of the lower parts of plaster from the wall: this allows bricks to have ventilation, and better evaporation of trapped water. It's extremely common not to cover the first meter of the wall with plaster in Venice.
- Use of macroporous plaster, also called intonaco di risanamento (restructuring plaster), which allows for a better evaporation of water trapped inside the bricks.

These two aren't solutions, but only measures to reduce the problem of humidity. Eventually the cut should be done.

I see there's another solution, which implies electrostatically discouraging capillarity, eliminating the difference of potential with an electrical device.
I don't think this system is used on a large scale in Venice.

See how the lower part of buildings isn't covered in plaster, either intentionally (with a regular horizontal margin) or due to decay (with an irregular border).

image hosted on flickr

Precious walls di ulysses68, su Flickr

image hosted on flickr

Wonderful decay di Rossella De Amici (off for family problems), su Flickr




As for the weather it can be extremely humid in the summer, due to the evaporation from the canals and the lack of wind blowing on the Padan and Venetian-Friulan plains on some days. Those are extremely sweaty days, as the high humidity percentage raises the perceived temperature.

There's a strange phenomenon on very humid nights: the cold water pipes flowing under the bridges cause condensation of water on top of them. So you can sometimes find small puddles of water on bridges, with no apparent reason.

This is a picture I took this summer, where the phenomenon is very visible

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Old October 22nd, 2013, 10:17 PM   #110
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Oh, La Serenissima. Makes you wonder how the same mankind that was capable to create such beauty today builds commieblock-like horror with rationalist excuses.

I wondered when visited Venice last summer what was that disgusting concrete thing... Now I know it's a sporthall.

Great thread!
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Old October 23rd, 2013, 05:57 AM   #111
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San Lorenzo church (1592-1602) and a little more about the sports palace

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Originally Posted by Zanovijetalo View Post
Oh, La Serenissima. Makes you wonder how the same mankind that was capable to create such beauty today builds commieblock-like horror with rationalist excuses.

I wondered when visited Venice last summer what was that disgusting concrete thing... Now I know it's a sporthall.

Great thread!
Thank you for your appreciation

I used to hate the sportshall, as I've always wondered how it was possible to throw so much concrete in Venice. It's the typical "reaction to Brutalism", especially when it's carried out in such a historical area. I really wished to demolish it or to cover it with ivy.

But then I came to terms with it. It's very functional and needed in the city, as it's the only sports palace for at least 4-5 schools, basketball and volleyball teams in the surroundings. I learned to appreciate how it's perfectly hidden behind historical buildings from the Venetian South Bank, but it's also very monumental when you look at it from below in the narrow access street.

Take a look at this aerial picture: it shows the south coast of Venice, but the sports hall is completely hidden behind the Nautical Museum (the orange highest building in the foreground, at the right of the bridge).

image hosted on flickr

Ponte de l'Arsenal from San Giorgio Maggiore di Tex Texin, su Flickr

I took a look at dozens of aerial pictures, mostly taken from cruise ships, and this is the only one revealing a slight part of the sportshall roof. Unfortunately it's unembeddable: http://flic.kr/p/8VTdwa

The real shame was the alternative, which involved the demolition of San Lorenzo (Saint Lawrence) church. Such demolition was proposed three times:
- In the 30s, to make room for "Casa dei Balilla" (Balilla was the fascist youth organization, where children did sports and were forced to receive and take part in the fascist propaganda).
- In the 50s, a swimming pool was proposed
- In the 60s, the idea was to build a civic and/or sports centre.

Luckily these plans were dropped, and this church was saved.
The church was established in the 9th century, but the current building dates back to the years 1592-1602. The fašade was never completed, but the interiors show a very rare double-sided altar placed in the middle of the church: you could attend the mass from both sides.

The church was the designed burial place of famous Venetian explorer Marco Polo, even if his tomb and body have never been found.

The convent of San Lorenzo (Saint Lawrence) was suppressed by Napoleon at the beginning of the 19th century. The church was deconsecrated in 1920.

Archeological excavation were carried out 30 years ago in order to find the older church and its pavement which lie underneath. However, digging was dropped because of lack of funding and the church was left abandoned until last year, serving as a house for cats in the meantime.
The annex convent has been renovated and transformed into a residence for poor elders, and a public library.

In 2012 the church was given to Mexican government for 9 years, in order to use it as a pavilion for Biennale. The Mexicans carried out some works to lay out a temporary wooden pavement, but the large hole in the ground remains, waiting for archeological investigations to be resumed.

Here's a few pictures. This is the fašade: if you take a closer look, you'll notice a lot of square holes on it. The holes were used in ancient times to secure the scaffonding used to build the fašade, which was never completed.

image hosted on flickr

2012 Venice di christian.costabel, su Flickr

Here's the renovated convent, now elders' residence.

image hosted on flickr

IRE_San_Lorenzo di Max Nicolodi, su Flickr

image hosted on flickr

IRE_San_Lorenzo di Max Nicolodi, su Flickr

You can find many pictures of the interiors here http://alloggibarbaria.blogspot.it/2...zo-aperta.html

I'll link a few of them directly here, but you can use the link to find all the other ones The interior is really huge, I can guarantee!!

I felt a very strong emotion when I first entered this church. I had always seen the doors closed for all my life, and I've often dreamt about what lay behind the fašade. I was finally able to make this dream come true this summer, thanks to the Mexicans.







P.s.: I see you're from Zagreb. I've visited Istria this summer, and I'll probably make a few posts about the very interesting Venetian heritage in coastal Croatia and Slovenia, in the future.
I might also spend New Year's eve in Zagreb this year! So I'd like to ask you for some suggestions and advice, if you don't mind
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Old October 23rd, 2013, 02:14 PM   #112
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I know San Lorenzo as we stayed in the house right across that bridge in front of it. I actually spent most of my time in Venice wandering around that neighborhood (that piazza is a cats paradise!). Too bad the church is in such bad shape, it was closed when I visited. Tried to peek in through holes but it was too dark to see anything, it is a delight to see the interiour in this blog you posted.

Of course, feel free to as any questions regarding Zagreb if you think I can help, here or by private messages.
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Old October 28th, 2013, 12:42 AM   #113
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What was the extent of the bombardment during the Second World War?
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Old October 28th, 2013, 02:34 AM   #114
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Quote:
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What was the extent of the bombardment during the Second World War?
Hi! Thank you for your question.

Venice was almost completely saved by bombings in World War II. There were only two attacks: one of them hit a motor vessel, and the other one hit the port, killing 25 people and creating only minor damage to the surrounding houses.

On the other hand, Mestre and Marghera received extensive damage by bombings. The main targets were industries in Marghera, and Mestre train station (which is a major railway crossing in Northern Italy).

Mestre still has some WWII ruins in the centre nowadays (here: http://goo.gl/maps/rAXBc ) but the huge damage to the city was not done by the war.
Like many Italian cities, Mestre expanded a lot in the 60s and 70s due to industries, with poor urban planning and destruction of older buildings.
The result is that Mestre is considered the "ugly sister" of Venice, even though things are slowly changing. You can see it if you wander around with Google Streetview, even if the nicer part of Mestre (the very centre) isn't shown on Streetview.
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Old October 28th, 2013, 04:22 PM   #115
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Great to know that most of the damage occurred on the outskirts. Nonetheless, it was a real surprise to me when I learned of the bombings, I always thought that the city in general had been totally spared.
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Old October 28th, 2013, 04:34 PM   #116
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Yeah I noticed that mestre was horribly ugly, I'm sure it used to be beautiful.
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Old October 28th, 2013, 05:02 PM   #117
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Great to know that most of the damage occurred on the outskirts. Nonetheless, it was a real surprise to me when I learned of the bombings, I always thought that the city in general had been totally spared.
You can find more information about Operation Bowler (21 March 1945) on Wikipedia, which is considered the only aerial bombing in Venice city.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Bowler

And some other information here http://issuu.com/recall-project/docs...104571/1075515

And here, in this Daily Mail article: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...unscathed.html

Note that Venice harbour had very little historical significance, as the historical Venetian harbour is the Arsenal, which was luckily left untouched. Here's the Google aerial view of Venice harbour, which is the F-shaped island: http://goo.gl/maps/x5rv7

And here's a picture of the bombing

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Old October 28th, 2013, 07:13 PM   #118
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Impressive images!!
The first time I heard about the bombing was in one of Pratt's graphic novels...The things one learns by chance.

Thanks for the additional information.
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Old October 28th, 2013, 11:03 PM   #119
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Old October 29th, 2013, 05:10 AM   #120
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Venice divisions (sestieri): general information

Here's an aerial view of the entire island of Venice. As you can see, the city looks like a fish from above

The city is divided in two parts by the Grand Canal, which crosses the city with the shape of a reverse S.

image hosted on flickr

Venice Map A marks Westin Europa & Regina di bexpokerry, su Flickr

The entire city is historically divided in 6 parts called sestieri. The word sestiere means "one sixth", just like the word quartiere/quarter means "one quarter" of the entire city.

The two halves of the city are linked by 4 bridges: Ponte della Costituzione, Ponte degli Scalzi, Ponte di Rialto and Ponte dell'Accademia. Each of the two halves of the city contains 3 sestieri: Santa Croce, San Polo and Dorsoduro on the west side, and Cannaregio, San Marco and Castello on the East Side.
The island of Giudecca can be considered like a 7th sestiere, although it's traditionally considered part of Dorsoduro.

I've drawn this map over a Google Maps screenshot, in order to explain it better



The sestieri are used as a topographic division of the city: since the streets are extremely complex, Venice is the only city in Italy where the old Austrian house numbering system is still used.

This system has a progressive door number for the entire sestiere (or Giudecca), regardless of the proper street name. Therefore a typical Venetian address is very simple, for example Sestiere di Dorsoduro 3333, 30122 Venice. It is very different from other Italian cities, where every street has its own numbers.

On the other hand, door numbers can be very high in Venice: the highest is Castello 6828.

Every sestiere has its own features, and I'll go into detail in the next posts.


In addition to the sestieri division of the city, every street and bridge has its own proper name too. Streets are usually named after a Saint, a historical seller who had his shop in the premises, a rich family or anything else. So there can be 3-4 streets with the same name around the city!
The street name is written in Venetian language inside a nizioleto (italian: lenzuolino, meaning "small bed sheet")

Here's a few nice examples:

Sestiere di Santa Croce, Ponte delle Tette, Calle dell'Agnella (Sestiere of the Saint Cross, Bridge of the tits, Street of Agnella)

Agnella were a family living in the surroundings, whereas "bridge of boobs" refers to the fact that the area was designed as a red light district for prostitutes in the 15th century. Therefore they used to show their breasts from the windows, in order to attract clients.
The breast exposure may have been promoted by the Venetian government itself (even though we don't have evidence of such law), as a measure to try to fight homosexuality, which was widespread in the 16th century.

image hosted on flickr

O Rialto, Ponte delle Tette di Elias Rovielo, su Flickr

On the other side of the bridge, we enter Sestiere of San Polo. We can have a better look at the windows where the breasts were exposed.
Sestiere di San Polo, Ponte delle Tette, Sottoportico e corte di Ca' Bollani (Sestiere of Saint Paul, Bridge of the tits, Underpass and court of Ca' Bollani).

Since this bridge lies at the border between San Polo and Santa Croce, you can locate it on the above map, on the border between red and yellow

image hosted on flickr

Ponte delle Tette di Sparky the Neon Cat, su Flickr

Last number of Sestiere Castello: 6828. This sign shows the highest door number in Venice.

image hosted on flickr

sestier de castello (alla fine per˛) di [toffa], su Flickr

This picture just shows number 1134 of some Sestiere (I don't know which one). Door numbers are standardized, just like nizioleti (street signs), and are drawn using a stencil.

image hosted on flickr

il n░ 1134 di fedegrafo, su Flickr
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