By Enrique Perez Manzano (Enrique Perez Architecture)
The global economic crisis has made Spain a bleak landscape with many new built unfinished projects, empty buildings, abandoned structures, plots unbuilt,... using an aggressive urbanism, without any sensitivity to the immediate environment.
This competition allows us to not only reflect on how to act generally on an extension of a building but go further and propose solutions to existing problems by approach the problem from different points of views that generate new ways of discussion relationship between architecture and the city.
Murcia is a médium city in southeastern Spain, dedicated to agriculture, this has been an important economic boost for the region. There has always been a close connection between the city and the countryside, but the planning of recent decades has undermined this model, imposing its rules over those of nature.
During the decade preceding the economic crisis the city has grown to the north, creating two large areas of expansion, offices and housing, currently being unfinished. In the area of housing an anomaly arises because we detected a small isolated plot aimed to build an office block. This building was begun but was abandoned. This seems to us a challenge and the Project begins the work on it.
The plot is square 80x80 m with a 22x22 m square building in the center. The abandoned building structure consists of ground floor + 12 floors and the plot contains two floors of underground parking. The layout of the building is formed by a central core of reinforced concrete (elevator and stairs) and circular reinforced concrete pillars.
Is proposed the change of use of the building, from offices to housing, because, currently, there is a lot of empty office buildings in the area of expansion of the city for offices. Is preserved the existing concrete structure and the distribution of housing adapts to the space. The building is extended with a wooden structure both pillars and slabs, expanding the communications core of reinforced concrete to the roof. Is installed a facade of glass recessed to create large terraces and protect the homes from the summer sun. The whole building is protected by a wooden skin, protecting us from the sun and creating a new image for the city.
One very important in this city and in this project aspect is the vegetation and passive systems for power generation. We proposed to create large areas of trees and garden contributes to shadows during the season with more heat and decreases the overall temperature. It is incorporated in different ways, in all the terraces of the houses large planters that produce shade in summer and let the sun in winter spending will be installed. On the roof a large garden is generated as building protection and building opened space and enjoyment. Throughout the plot planting large trees and urban gardens for community use is proposed, thus generating work and economy is promoted.
We think with this proposal is improved the life of the people of the building and the city.