Lisbon City Hall approves requalification of palace into housing instead of tourist accomodation

Written By Manuel Poças

According to CNN Portugal, the Lisbon City Hall finally approved the requalification of an old palace (Palacete Touzet) located in Alcântara, Lisbon.

Dating back to 1888, Palacete Touzet served as the headquarters and atelier of the Touzet construction company, which was funded by the French constructors Charles Vieillard and Fernand Touzet, the authors of a large amount of the industrial patrimony that was built in Lisbon. The Central Tejo complex is one example of that patrimony.

This beautiful old palace, which can be considered a historic and patrimonial building, has been closed for years. Its conservation state has been deteriorating, and today, only the facades and the stairs remain.

The proposal for the new project has been around since 2017, but it was only approved very recently. Initially, according to the first proposal the property was going to be transformed into accommodation for tourists, but now it will be used for housing.

Given the characteristics and the value of the property, in terms of urban space, the Lisbon City Hall chose to approve the requalification under the condition that the facades are maintained. This decision aims at preserving that same value.

This type of requalification, which has been called ‘demolition’, is somewhat polemic. According to the article published by CNN Portugal, the property will be demolished but the facades will be preserved. However, considering that there is nothing but ruins inside, calling it a ‘demolition’ may induce the wrong idea.

What is rotten will be taken down, but the image will be preserved. Within the facades, a new building will emerge. One that considers and preserves the value of what it once was.

When the project is complete, Palacete Touzet will regain its image (not the old ruins), and its inside will be transformed into one studio apartment, one T1, five T2s, three T3s, and five T4s.

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