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Cristalleries Planell Civic Centre


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This interesting project is based on the determination to enhance its protected façade, which has heritage value, integrating it instead of making it stand out, in an exercise in which energy sustainability assumes a central role.

This public facility is intended for accommodating an adult education centre, the headquarters for a linguistic standardisation consortium and a hotel on a triangular plot in Barcelona’s Les Corts district. Two of the three sides of the plot are defined by the façade of the old Planell glass factory, which was established on calle Anglesola in 1913, and has heritage listing.

As an urban piece, the building makes full use of the plot, although the triangular shape and listed frontages prevent its full occupation. The building distributes the programme over four storeys, which are set back from the listed south façade. The resulting covered atrium makes the new build and the listed part compatible by improving the daylight conditions in the classroom spaces and providing a heat and sound barrier that protects it from the surroundings. This long narrow atrium formed by the listed frontage and the new structural façade is reproduced in the north vertex, acting as a relational system between the building’s administrative uses and the exterior.

The building’s section explains its performance: controlling and managing the air in natural conditions. In winter the aim is to control heat loss caused by air renewal, redeem he heavy internal load built up due to the inertia of the wall structure and draw fresh air in from the atrium, which thus acts as a natural air recycler. In summer, the heat has to be dissipated by moving the largest possible volume of air and drawing in air from the atriums. The drivers of this air movement are strictly natural ones, solar chimneys and Venturi-effect “caps”.

The two basic tools for achieving climatic comfort in the building are the harnessing and activation of inertia (loadbearing structure) and air movement. There is no artificial air conditioning, but it has to be moved in a controlled and intentional manner: in winter very little to redeem the high internal load due to teaching use (based on CO2 sensors); in summer it must be moved by temperature and in sufficient
amounts to eliminate the internal load and avoid overheating. The tool that moves this air is a natural driver, acting at the same time as the building’s roof. It consists of four solar chimneys that thanks to their materials and geometry generate three natural ventilation systems; the chimney effect produced by the difference in height with the interior spaces, the Venturi effect produced by the “caps” on their tops that ensure nocturnal ventilation and, lastly, the greenhouse effect produced by the superposition of a transparent surface on a black one. The pyramid geometry of the chimneys responds to the sun’s summertime movement throughout the day.

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Localización Location: Barcelona. Spain. Arquitectos Architects: HARQUITECTES | David Lorente, Josep Ricart, Xavier Ros, Roger Tudó, arquitectos. Colaboradores Collaborators: Blai Cabrero Bosch, Montse Fornés Guàrdia, Toni Jiménez Anglès, Berta Romeo, Carla Piñol, Xavier Mallorquí, Andrei Mihalache. Equipo Team: ARS Project (consultoría ambiental), DSM arquitectes (estructura), TDI (ingeniería), Play-Time (visualización 3D). Constructora General Contractor: Construccions DECO S.A. Superficie construida Built area: 1.694m². Redacción proyecto Project Draft: 2012-2014. Fecha inicio y finalización de la obra Start and completion date of the works: 2014-2016. Fotografía Photography: Adrià Goula.
Suppliers list
Fabricación de Carpintería exterior de madera: Carinbisawww.carinbisa.com carinbisa@carinbisa.com
Ricart, Josep
Sabadell, Barcelona
Tudó, Roger
Sabadell, Barcelona
David Lorente
Sabadell, Barcelona
Xavier Ros Majó
Sabadell, Barcelona
Adrià Goula