São Marco de Canaveses Church, by Álvaro Siza, 1996 - in São Marco de Canaveses, Portugal
The Church for Marco of Canaveses, is only a part of a religious complex that foresees an auditorium, the catechesis school and the house for the parish priest. The Santa Maria Church in Marco de Canavezes is part of an overall complex that, together with a planned Parish Center, will form a small urban square.It was the parish priest Father Nuno Higino’s personal decision to call on Siza, and to invest himself fully in this very ambitious project.
The proposed plan by Alvaro Siza, with the church playing a central role, will ensure that the other buildings will be in concordance with the pre-existing scale of the neighbourhood. The façade (17.5 x 17.5 square meter ) is in three sections with two projecting towers. The 10 meter high temporary grey steel doors will eventually be replaced by bronze doors.
“The visit to the place already chosen had disturbed myself deeply: it was a very difficult place, with great quota differences, lofty to a highway with a lot of traffic. As if it was not enough, that area was marked by buildings of terrible quality.”