Sculptures and monuments

Córdoba. Spain

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Intervention on Baena Castle

José Manuel López Osorio, arquitecto

Description Technical file

Restoration and contemporary architecture are present in this intervention carried out on Baena Castle; an action that encompasses both the conservation works on the historic structures and their ability to integrate into new architectural and urban developments capable of revitalising their urban setting.

The restoration process of the historic walls and fabrics has been undertaken after a rigorous archaeological and stratigraphic analysis that has revealed the building’s different constructional phases: a structure of Islamic origin transformed into a Christian fortress in the mid-14th century, transformed into a stately palace in the 16th century and whose parade ground was occupied by five water reservoirs in the second half of the 20th century.

The architectural intervention is based on recognising the ruin and its historic traces, reinterpreting the archaeological information and partially restoring the territorial scale and the urban profile of the towers. This recovery of volumes was possible thanks to the reading of the walls that was undertaken and to the valuable information provided by the abundant written and graphic documentation, as photographs exist dating from the early 20th century where most of the castle towers can be seen before they were demolished.

Restoring the new walls of the fortress was carried out with sandstone ashlar set in hydraulic lime mortar, hand working the edges to allow light into the towers. The fabric presents a pseudo-opus isodomum with ashlars of variable height to give some formal flexibility to the meeting points with the historic fabric. To ensure the structural stability of the tower walls, they are built as reinforced fabric to shape boxes confined into stainless steel ribs and platens, elements that are linked by means of bracing beams, also in stainless steel, to white-cement reinforced concrete cores situated inside the towers. Both the stone walls and the concrete cores rest on the existing remains thanks to sand infilling that evens out the support surfaces and prevent systematic undercutting and grooving. These works were carried out under strict archaeological control without damaging the original fabric.

The newly-created spaces use wooden walkways to connect the tower interiors with the castle parapets, allowing them to be walked along a large part of their perimeter.

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Localización Location: Baena, Córdoba. Spain. Arquitectos Architects: José Manuel López Osorio. Colaboradores Collaborators: : Miguel Medrano Bernal, David Toledo Quero, Noemi Cruz Orantes, Manuel Contreras Cobos, Jesús Cillero Capel, Inmaculada Gavilán Marín y José García Soriano (redacción de proyecto), Miguel Ángel Jiménez Dengra, arquitecto técnico (cálculo de estructuras), Ábaco Ingenieros (cálculo de instalaciones), Francisco Urbistondo Tamayo y Pilar Segovia (levantamiento planimétrico), José Manuel Torres Carbonell (estudio histórico y estratigrafía muraria), Vorsevi, S.A. (análisis suelo-estructura), Francisco Martín Peinado, geólogo (caracterización de materiales) y Julia Ramos (trabajos de restauración, fase previa). Dirección principal de obra 2ª Fase Principal site management, 2nd phase: Manuel Albendín Castro (arquitecto). Dirección de ejecución Execution management: Francisco Urbistondo Tamayo, arquitecto técnico (fase previa), Francisco Urbistondo Tamayo, Manuel Valencia y Miguel Felipe Martín Gil, arquitectos técnicos (1ª fase), Mª Carmen Sáez Serrano, arquitecta técnico (2ª fase). Intervención arqueológica Archaeological intervention: Javier Ariza Rodríguez. Promotor Developer: Excmo. Ayuntamiento de Baena. Constructora General Contractor: Bados y Navarro S.L. (fase previa), Estudio y Métodos de la Restauración S.L. (1ª fase), Azuche 88 S.L y Construcciones y Excavaciones Fajosa S.L (U.T.E. 2ª fase). Fecha de finalización de la obra Completion date of the works: Julio 2015. Superficie construida Built area: 4.233,61 m². Fotografía Photography: Jesús Granada y José Manuel López Osorio-Cristina García Zarza.
Jesús Granada