Gira Solum
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GIRA.SOLUM Shopping Centre: from the 1st generation to contemporary

Photography by © Maria João Gala

The intervention by Visioarq modernized Gira.Solum and its relationship with the surroundings, establishing it as a contemporary space that successfully reinvented itself in Coimbra.

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This small convenience shopping centre, featuring 115 stores for fashion, services, and catering spread across four levels, was established in 1983 as a first-generation shopping centre. For a comprehensive intervention, a clean and objective language was developed, enhancing the formal composition of the building, through a duality of texture and colour that reinforced clarity in the interpretation of the building and its horizontal orientation.


To conceal the disorderly placement of air conditioning units, sliding and perforated blade panels were introduced, along with a brise-soleil system, that also allow to simulate the increase of open areas on the façade, thus adding a greater sense of lightness to the building’s volume.


Following this compositional approach, the existing railings were restructured, replaced by more modern alternatives, and to achieve complete balance in the building, the verticality of the exterior staircases was enhanced by retaining the structure while completely revamping the external appearance.


The terrace area was completely standardized, and in volumetric terms, it created the missing foundation that the building lacked in terms of composition. These areas are fully covered and enclosed by walls that serve as both planters and resting spots, and seamlessly integrate functionally with the building’s access and its surroundings.


Tensioned ceilings were also introduced on the external consoles, featuring strips of translucent fabric to utilize the existing supports, as well as a lighting system that bestowed the building with the deserved dignity.