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The new sustainable houses in Bairro da Cruz Vermelha, Source: Facebook of Lisbon Municipality

Largest one-off neighbourhood renewal takes place in Lisbon

Largest one-off neighbourhood renewal takes place in Lisbon

It concerns the resettlement of 130 households to their new sustainable abodes

Last week, residents in one of Lisbon’s most socially disadvantaged neighbourhoods, Bairro da Cruz Vermelha, started relocating to their new homes – constructed in a way that meets contemporary environmental and sustainability standards. 130 such houses were built with a municipal investment of 11 million euros. The hope is to boost the quality of life and the habitability of the area located in the extreme north of the Portuguese capital.

The neighbourhood was named after the Red Cross

The new houses are designed to make use of rainwater, sun-heated hot water, individual gardens, good sun exposure and an evolutionary typology - in other words, houses that grow with the family, as Lisbon’s municipal website has described them.

The new section of Bairro da Cruz Vermelha will have a playground, universal pedestrian accessibility, improved access to public transport as well as a centralized and segregated waste collection (through the use of the so-called eco-islands).

The signing of the term of acceptance of the houses took place on 9 June, by families that were already residing in the neighbourhood. This meant improved and more dignified living conditions for them.

The construction operation was characterized as “one of the most demanding” by the mayor of Lisbon, Fernando Medina, and also as “the biggest project for a neighbourhood made by the City of Lisbon, at once, and the one with the largest investment budget: 11 million euros".

Cruz Vermelha means Red Cross in Portuguese and the naming is not coincidental since the neighbourhood came into being in the 1960s after a collaborative initiative between the Portuguese Red Cross and the Lisbon City Council. The goal of that initiative was to provide living quarters for people of disadvantaged social status, however, the construction materials used were cheap and of low quality.

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