Healthcare architectures

Zaragoza. Spain

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Medical Center in Zaragoza

Elena Miret + Ibon Vicinay

Description Technical file

The decided strategy through which the authors tackled this project has allowed a dark and obsolete space to be transformed into a source of luminosity in which the users of the Medical Centre can enjoy a necessary spot of relaxation.
The commission resulted from the need to install an elevator in the premises occupied by the medical centre, a space situated on the ground floor of a multifunctional building dating from the 1970s in a large and central city block. Although the large scale of the building and its complex programme was then successfully dealt with, the retail gallery that crosses the ground floor had barely been updated and had long lost its initial vitality and its connection with the public road. Moreover, it was confirmed that neither the installations or the spatial layout of the premises had the appropriate conditions for medical assistance, and so once the possibilities offered by the premises and its demanded use had been explored, a proposal was drafted that encouraged the clients to embark on a comprehensive reform.
Creating the illusion of a skylight, an energy-bearing vault – containing the conduits for the installations – covers the external void that connects the retail gallery with the street through the premises, thus allowing daylight and fresh air to be brought into the interior.
Opening up this courtyard next to the structural portico, as well as addressing the height problems, arranges the space within the premises into two strips that fill up the built volume next to the party walls. The public area containing the reception and patient waiting area is made into an open-plan space. The consultation rooms are grouped together, veiled by a landscape of glass display cases that dissolves the presence of the building’s weight and of its load-bearing structure.
The project was built from light, the most luxurious and sustainable material. Natural light that extends to that generated by the centre’s activity. Light reflected on the sheet of water in the courtyard, which humidifies the flow of fresh air. A sheaf of fine metallic profiles materialises the clarity that emanates from the vault in a casing of variable density. Thus the courtyard illuminates the rooms and directs the gaze into the distance, enlarging the inhabited space.
In the white landscape of light and reflections, the softness of birch assumes the vital counterpoint that accompanies touch. Wooden slats adjust the privacy of the rooms. Also made from wood is the inhabited unit that contains the services on the upper floor, which is intended for special consultations. Here the relative density of the spaces is inverted and the filter between the principal spaces becomes more technical and partitioned. When the doors are opened, a lamp appears like golden gills of light that change with use.

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Localización Location: Zaragoza. Spain. Arquitecto Architect: Elena Miret y Ibon Vicinay, arquitectas / Elena Miret + Ibon Vicinay Arquitectos. Colaboradores Collaborators: ATECO, Centro de Cálculo de Estructuras, S.L. y D3i Diseño, Desarrollo y Dirección de Instalaciones, S.L. Promotor Developer: Centro Médico Ferrer Novella. Constructora General Contractor: Restauración y Construcción, S.A. y Torraza Monteoscuro, S.L. Ejecución Execution: 2014. Fotografía Photography: Mariela Apollonio y Vicinay + Miret Arquitectos.
Suppliers list
Elevador: Magaiz

Mármol: Levantina

Sanitarios: Roca
Elena Miret
Ibon Vicinay
Mariela Apollonio