Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.
Social security administration office building in old city Barcelona, Spain by BCQ Arquitectes
April 24th, 2012 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: BCQ Arquitectes
Planning of the complex
The building negotiates its orientation with the urban fabric. The original planning proposal adapts to the reality of the existing urban setting. The ground floor and the basement floor are located within the boundaries of the site; upper floors, however, move and align with the street l’Om. This change frees the space in the south side of the square and creates a wider space.
Although the building divides the empty space of the urban fabric into two, the treatment of each space is the same, and the ground floor of the building is understood as an element of continuity of the surroundings. It is essential that there is transparency in the access area which is overlooking the square.
The use of the building is administrative in the floors above ground, while the basement floors are destined for parking and service areas. This building is divided into three volumes, whose rotation is suggested by the geometry of the building plot.
The volume of the ground floor adopts the geometry of the site. This floor establishes a continuing relationship with public space in which it is situated. The volume of first to fourth floors regains the address of the street l’Om, and creates, with the projection originated by this shift, a large porch that frames and protects the building entrance. The third volume of the fifth and sixth floors is guided by a turn in between the two previous volumes. The fact that this third volume is smaller than the lower one, generates a terrace accessible to the users of the building from the fifth floor.
The need for natural light which is determined by the administrative use of the building is resolved with the large windows in facade which are protected from the incidence of direct solar radiation through a continuous envelope of aluminum slats. These slats give identity to the building facades: they are arranged horizontally along the main facades of the building (longitudinal facades) and in vertical on the beams.
The use of a framed structure with pillars in facade allows for open floor plans that are organized from two vertical cores, leaving the rest of the surface free. The partitioning is done through lightweight partition wall. In this way, the building allows a versatility of occupation in time.
Toni Casamor and David Baena studied at El Vallès School of Architecture (Barcelona) and, in 1991, they set up BCQ Arquitectes, specialising in architecture, landscape and urbanism.
Toni Casamor has taught at the Zurich School of Architecture, the ETSAV and the ETSAB. Since May 2010, he has been Chairman of the Barcelona Branch of the Col·legi d’Arquitectes de Catalunya (COAC). David Baena was Director of the professional guidance course in Construction Projects at the Sert School (COAC) and is currently Director of the Technical Sector and teaches Construction at the ESARQ-UIC. Both taught in the Architecture Faculty of Alghero (2005-2009). Since 2006 Manel Peribáñez and Maria Taltavull have joined as partners of BCQ.
They have been invited to talk about their works at national and international venues, and their projects have been included in numerous Spanish and foreign architecture publications. Among other prizes BCQ arquitectura barcelona won the First place 2002 AJAC Awards (Association of Young Catalan Architects) and the First prize in the 2nd Vallès Architecture Biennial 2003.
Outstanding among their works are the buildings for the Marina in Sant Adrià del Besòs built for the Fòrum Barcelona 2004, the Plaça Vila de Madrid in Barcelona (2003), the municipal Sports Hall in Olot, Girona (2010) and the Office Administrative Building in Old City, Barcelona (2011). The project of the library Joan Maragall in Barcelona (completion expected in 2013) is currently under construction.
In 2008 the book Reflejos | Reflections (Actar Pro), a collection of BCQ’s selected writings and works was published. A current view of the work of the study is prepared in a monographic issue of “TC Cuadernos”, which will be published soon.
Contact BCQ Arquitectes