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    “This is a collection of interviews by architect Nuno Lacerda Lopes. They are conversations between architects of the School of Oporto where the process of building an ideal of architecture, profession, society and school is sought, based on a personal and open reflection and even clarify the theoretical and practical concerns as well as the circumstances that underlie Portuguese architecture today”.


    “Let’s talk with Rui Braz Afonso, born in Covilhã, Tortosendo, economist, professor Doctor in Italy, did his doctorate in Venice, dedicated to studies and research in territorial planning. With a large experience in urban planning, he worked and works in several master plans, town councils. He is a professor of Urban Economy, with more than 25 years of experience.

    I would like to start by thanking you for the time yielded for the conversation and try to make a visit to these 25 years… What have changed in Portugal in terms of housing, society and the economy? Are different houses, different dwellings justified? What do you think?

    First of all, I find these conversations interesting, they force us to reflect and it is always another occasion to take a small step forward.

    I have a degree in Economics and entered the Faculty of Economics in 1969, at the height of the so-called Marcelist Spring. I entered exactly on top of the 1969 elections. It was an important moment for me, for my first reflections on what Portugal was like at that time. Then I entered the school at the beginning of 1978… 25 years have passed, and let’s say I came from SAAL (Serviço Ambulatório de Apoio Local), which was an important journey. Then I was here with some outings, with the idea that it’s very good here (in Portugal), but to understand that it’s good, one needs to go outside once in a while… In other words, it was fundamental for me, when in 1968 my father took me to Paris… Then I tried to do it with my children and I keep trying to do it.

    Obviously I remember the conditions, even because I was very much requested to see it, a little because of the family environment. But I was very much solicited to see the unbelievable conditions in which all the living spaces were designed, for people who could not in any way interact with the project capacity. It was the minimum. Portugal has always lived within this minimum.

    Rui Braz Afonso e Nuno Portas