Thursday, August 17, 2017

Architecture of Santorini

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The traditional architecture of Santorini is similar to that of the other Cyclades, with low-lying cubical houses, made of local stone and whitewashed or limewashed with various volcanic ashes used as colours. The unique characteristic is the common utilisation of the hypóskapha: extensions of houses dug sideways or downwards into the surrounding pumice. These rooms are prized because of the high insulation provided by the air-filled pumice, and are used as living quarters of unique coolness in the summer and warmth in the winter. These are premium storage space for produce, especially for wine cellaring: the Kánava wineries of Santorini.

When strong earthquakes struck the island in 1956, half the buildings were completely destroyed and a large number suffered repairable damage. The underground dwellings along the ridge overlooking the caldera, where the instability of the soil was responsible for the great extent of the damage, needed to be evacuated. Most of the population of Santorini had to emigrate to Piraeus and Athens

The fear of pirates relocated villages far from the shore on steep cliffs or hidden valleys where they were harder to spot or to reach from the sea.


High density, narrow streets, small buildings due to:
-shortage of safe land
-mutual protection from sun & wind
- security
-family growth
-construction economy
-the highly communal spirit of the old societies.


High density, narrow streets, small buildings due to:
-shortage of safe land
-mutual protection from sun & wind|
-security
- the highly communal spirit of the old societies

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