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Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal
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.

Montbou public school in Santa Margarida de Montbui, Barcelona, Spain by David Closes Arquitecte

July 3rd, 2013 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: David Closes Arquitecte


The school, with a planned gross floor area of about 700 m2, had to be placed on a very small site, of just 630 m2, situated beyond on an existing sports court that was intended as the school’s playground. The surroundings were formed by a football ground to the west and, to the east, by a sector of single-family dwellings separated from the school plot by an alleyway of just three meters wide.

Image Courtesy © José Hevia

  • Architects: David Closes Arquitecte
  • Project: Montbou public school
  • Location: Santa Margarida de Montbui, Barcelona, Spain
  • Photography: José Hevia
  • Area: 767 m2
  • Client:  Catalan Government
  • Collaborators: Ricard Torres (architect), Miquel Àngel Sala /Robert Brufau i Associats (structures consultants), Toni Vila (industrial engineer), Dídac Dalmau (construction engineer), José Hevia (fotògraf)
  • Date of project: 1999-2002
  • Execution: 2003-2004
  • Builder: Paysa
  • Cost: 711.150 eur (vat included)

Image Courtesy © José Hevia

Practically all the openings are located in the south and north sides. This meant that the main lines of sight through the buildings follow a lengthwise line across the site, the direction that is not interrupted by other constructions (the football ground or the single-family houses). This favoured the longest lines of sight: in one direction towards woods and hills to the south of the village, and in the other overlooking, the watercourse and fields situated to the north.

Image Courtesy © José Hevia

Both the arrangement of the main flows of the building (entries and exits, and the stairways and lobbies inside) and the formalization of the porch (where draws together all the circulation flows) further aim to highlight these views.

The school’s main entrance comprises a ramp tangent to the alleyway that passes through the east façade almost without a trace, like a child who hides under the skirts of his mother without raising them. In this way, the façade maintains the appearance of a blind wall that envelopes and encloses the entrance porch. The ramp, the blind walls and the east fence aim to extend and enhance the public space of the passageway and guide users to the school and to the playgrounds crossing the porch. The formalization of the east façade, almost devoid of references of scale, tries to give to the small school a character of public building.

Image Courtesy © José Hevia

David Closes

Catalan architect who was born in 1967. He studied architecture at the Escola d’Arquitectura de Barcelona (ETSAB). He has worked mainly on urban scale projects, on public space projects and on territorial and landscape proposals for several public institutions. From 2004 to 2011, he has been Director of the Urban Projects Department of Manresa City Council.

Image Courtesy © José Hevia

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Category: School

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