Day Center for the Elderly and Community Office
The co-existence of two different programs.
Although the use of the building is a day center for the elderly, it also houses the office for different citizen services, open to the general public, to carry out administrative procedures and therefore, situated on the ground floor occupying most of the front on Passeig Jacint Verdaguer.
The concept of the building, its geometry and volume, are determined and defined by the following parameters:
1.The dual use of the building, having to give maximum visibility to the office for citizens.
2.Location on a privileged site overlooking three streets, and with its main front on Passeig Jacint Verdaguer.
3.By application of planning regulations, it's a free standing volume.
4.Difference in height between Passeig Jacint Verdaguer and the back street, equivalent of a full floor height, that causes the ground floor to be partially a basement.
5.The multi-purpose room that can be used as a cafeteria, game room, lounge with stage for performances, etc, with its size of 250 m2, much larger than the surface of the other units, which makes it the pivoting axis around which the rest of the building rotates.
To give response to the situation of the ground floor being partially underground, and the need for maximum use of this floor for its ease of accessibility and mobility of the elderly, a courtyard for lighting and ventilation is designed. This courtyard, in the center of gravity of the floor, articulates all the spaces around it, providing them not only with lots of natural light, but also with crossed natural ventilation.
The geometry and volume of the building is structured around two bodies with geometric characteristics of its own. A low and horizontal volume aligned with Passeig Jacint Verdaguer and a prism with a strong vertical component aligned with Caputxins street. The first one contains mainly the office for the citizens on the ground floor and, on the first floor, the multipurpose room, the centerpiece of the program requirements, which emphasizes its importance by projecting itself towards the exterior and creating, in the process, the front porch over the glazed facade of the office for the citizens. The vertical prism in Caputxins Street hosts mainly the toilets and workshops, and also all the elements for vertical circulation.
The structure is solved with a mix of concrete pillars and walls, leaving both the interior and exterior walls of concrete molded with large, smooth and continuous formworks.
The compositional criteria based on large openings and large solid blocks of concrete creates an image of architectural strong volumes, which at the same time look fragile due to the glazed treatment of all ground floor façade open to Passeig Jacint Verdaguer.