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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.

EXTENSION TO THE COURTHOUSE in León, Spain by Enrique Bardají & Asociados

 
November 12th, 2015 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: Enrique Bardají & Asociados

The Judicial Shared Services Building is in Ponferrada next to the Sil riverside park. It is an independent building but designed as an extension to the existing courthouse which, together with two cultural and National Police Force buildings, complete the block and restrict the entry of light into the extension.

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

  • Architects: Enrique Bardají & Asociados
  • Project: EXTENSION TO THE COURTHOUSE
  • Location: Ponferrada, León. Spain
  • Photography: José Manuel Cutillas Medina
  • CLIENT: MINISTRY OF JUSTICE
  • Architects Design: Enrique Bardají Álvarez and Carlos Santi Merayo
  • Site Management: Enrique Bardají & Asociados, S.L.
  • CONSTRUCTION COMPANY: CEINSA
  • TECHNICAL ARCHITECT: Juan José Ruiz de la Fuente
  • STRUCTURAL ENGINEERING AND INSTALLATIONS: Valladares Ingeniería
  • CONSTRUCTION PERIOD: 2012-14
  • AREA OF ACTION: 3,527 m2
  • No. OF FLOORS: 4 + 2   

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

It is developed on four storeys above ground level, together with a semi-basement and basement. Although the extension built has an independent access, security measures have made it essential to design a large shared entrance hall for the two buildings linking them physically and visually on the ground floor and providing a connection using a closed bridge-gallery. The vertical communications, toilets, archives and installations are located in a strip running along the northern part of the building allowing the workrooms to be flexibly arranged on the rest of the floor, pursuing the principles of rationality and economy.

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

The difficulties in terms of sunlight presented by the site and the special climate of Ponferrada, together with the need to illuminate all floors of the court offices, have conditioned the choice of a glass wall for the whole envelope of the building except for the southern facade.

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

To mitigate this circumstance, a double glass skin was chosen, separating and opening up on the semi-basement and ground floors to generating a greenhouse in the shade of these floors. This element is the true heart and climatic lung of the building. The flows of cool, damp air in summer and hot, temperate air in winter generated by this space make it possible to establish air circulation inside the double skin to improve the climatic conditions of the building as a whole.

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

The closed double skin, permeable to the outside and with windows with motorised opening systems inside, incorporates walkways formed by practicable elements allowing the control of air circulation. The strips are opened or closed depending on the season, allowing control of the air flows in the chamber.

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

This circumstance associated with the opening of the motorised windows first thing in the morning introduces temperate air, sweeping through the workrooms before the building is occupied. In summer, the cool air accumulated in the greenhouse-chamber (which has little exposure to the sun) during the night will improve the thermal conditions of the air in the offices. In winter, with the closure systems impeding the air movement, a natural layer of warm air will be developed to prevent energy loss from the inner skin.

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

The rest of the materials used on the facade (ochre granite on the south of the building and aluminium panels on the east and north facades) not only makes it a representative public building, it also allows a simple, continuous compositional interplay of clear volumes and organised appearance providing mobility, in which the interplay of light and shade strengthens the general composition.

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © José Manuel Cutillas Medina

Image Courtesy © Enrique Bardají & Asociados

Image Courtesy © Enrique Bardají & Asociados

Image Courtesy © Enrique Bardají & Asociados

Image Courtesy © Enrique Bardají & Asociados

Image Courtesy © Enrique Bardají & Asociados

Image Courtesy © Enrique Bardají & Asociados

Image Courtesy © Enrique Bardají & Asociados

Image Courtesy © Enrique Bardají & Asociados

Image Courtesy © Enrique Bardají & Asociados

Image Courtesy © Enrique Bardají & Asociados

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Category: Courthouse

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