Center for Studies in Architecture and Urbanism


Center for Studies
in Architecture and Urbanism

FAUP collaborates with inland municipalities in housing programs through PRR

February 7th, 2024

FAUP is developing cooperation projects with municipalities in the interior of the country as part of two of the most important housing programs included in the Recovery and Resilience Plan (PRR): the 1st Right - Support Program for Access to Housing and BNAUT - National Emergency and Temporary Accommodation Exchange.

Cooperation between public bodies at this key moment is therefore doubly important. On the one hand, it contributes to greater territorial cohesion in the country, which is being severely compromised due to the difficulties faced by inland municipalities in competing with those located on the coast. According to data from the Transparency Portal, it is estimated that around 48% of high-density territories have managed to see at least one application approved for the 1st Right, as opposed to 30% of low-density territories. On the other hand, these cooperations allow the FAUP to strengthen its role in society and in the territory, by providing technical and specialized support, geared towards the effective use of PRR funds in achieving the social function of housing.

Along these lines, projects are underway with the Vila Nova de Foz Côa City Council, in the context of intervention in an area classified as a World Heritage Site, and with the Fundão City Council and the University of Beira Interior with the aim of responding to migrant and refugee communities.

Good practices in qualifying a listed area

The cooperation agreement between FAUP and the Municipality of Vila Nova de Foz Côa provides for the development of implementation projects under the 1st Right - Support Program for Access to Housing. More specifically, as part of the rehabilitation of the housing stock being acquired by the Municipality, aimed at households in the greatest housing and financial need.

This work is a continuation of the protocol currently in force, which not only allows access to public funding under the PRR but also enables future technicians to be trained in a real work context, as recently happened in the 'Family Architects' workshop.

The work is being carried out by a team from FAUP, made up of teachers and researchers -Aitor Varea Oro, Eliseu Gonçalves, Luciana Rocha and Carla Garrido, among others - with the aim of ensuring that the proposed solutions can become exemplary from the point of view of the social, constructive and cultural context.

In this way, the aim is to promote and disseminate good practices that can be replicated in the future, contributing to the qualification of a municipal territory as a place of cultural and historical value, recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1998.

Housing for emigrants and refugees

As part of the BNAUT - National Emergency and Temporary Housing Grant, which is part of the PRR, FAUP and the Department of Civil Engineering and Architecture at the University of Beira Interior are providing support to the Municipality of Fundão in implementing BNAUT applications.

Maria Neto, a lecturer and researcher at UBI, explains that "applications to BNAUT require specific knowledge and a methodology which, on the one hand, ensures the quality of the intervention as a whole and, on the other hand, compliance with the planned timetable, requiring both detailed knowledge of the processes for examining and implementing similar applications and the specific needs of future BNAUT users".

The team coordinated by Aitor Varea Oro, from FAUP, Maria Neto, from DECA-UBI, and Ana Cunha, from the Municipality of Fundão, which will include final-year architecture students, says that the cooperation aims to provide a fast, effective and quality response to future households that will benefit from BNAUT.

In addition, it will contribute to the production of useful knowledge capable of facilitating and qualifying the future implementation of public housing policies, with a special focus on the housing of refugee communities, asylum seekers and migrants.