Algarve Portugal – The Trem Project
How it all started
After a 3 year renovation by contractor CRC, (initiated by Dona Anna Jacoba Zachariasse) the building at the corner of Rua Jaques Pessoa/Travessa Do Trem at the Roman Bridge in Tavira was opened on 30th March 2007 by Eng° José Macário Correia, Presidente Da Câmara Municipal De Tavira
Since 1984 the Dutch couple Anna Jacoba Zachariasse and her husband Jan Krielaars (who studied architecture in the Netherlands) have been visiting Tavira. From the first visit on, they were impressed by the potential and positive atmosphere in this mediaeval city. They visited an exhibition on the market square in Tavira, showing interesting plans for developments of the harbour, the theatre, pedestrian area, vision on parking problems etc. Jan Krielaars thought : “A municipality that really had a vision on the future”. Mr. Krielaars’ speciality is renovating old houses in the Netherlands and in France. Mrs. Zachariasse is a remedial teacher for dyslectics. They decided to search for a “pied a terre” in this nice town. When walking along the boulevard in Tavira, an advertisement plate of a local estate agent on the façade of an old building, caught their eyes. A first phone-call followed.
The owner at that time wanted to demolish the building and rebuild it completely. After visiting the property several times, Anna Jacoba and Jan decided to buy the 3 houses in July 2003. Jan Krielaars’ first idea was not to demolish but restore the construction, by building a traditional steel skeleton in the existing building, to guarantee the stability.
However Jan couldn’t find a company to take on that job in time. At that time Tavirian Architect Mr. Francesco Taveira all ready had a project in the City Hall for the formar owner. Mr. Taveira brought Jan Krielaars in contact with Tavirian contractor Carlos Carmo from the company CRC, who had done several renovating projects in his town.
CRC was familiar with an easier and lighter way of constructing, “light steel”. Jan agreed CRC’s proposal, and trusted the potential of the CRC-team. The first plan was sent to the City Hall of Tavira in November 2003. Francesco Taveira was left with the responsibility and “paperwork” of the project and helped Jan & Anna Jacoba with keeping the nerves under control. Simple problems gave big effects: At the Camara, the idea had settled that the former owner made new plans, drawings were lost in space. Architect Taveira went to a new office. The roof appeared to be worse than expected. “Murphy’s law in optima forma”. In 2005 everything came in a rapid at once. The project was split in 6 independent apartments for the owners and their children. The Dutch couple in particular is satisfied about the way the Portuguese craftsmen were able to restore the original details, as well from the interior as the exterior.
The clear colours are chosen after research of the original colours on the job and are also inspired by the typical Algarvian fishermen’s boats. These original colours are nowadays seen less then in the past. Several books and magazines all ready published about the project Rua Jaques Pessoa/Travessa Do Trem.
Centerfold of the book: Tavira: the essence of the Algarve by Manuel Parra Sorriano
Cover of the book: Tavira: exploring and getting to know by Dino Adao