The building is located in the industrial estate called Prado del Espino at Boadilla del Monte, in Greater Madrid, a place without identity nor references; an uninspiring context, difficult to deal with.
The need of exterior space for parking the vehicles of the public service defines the building position on the site, organizing a clear and efficient ring for traffic circulation around the constructed volume. This volume, compact, emphatic, and precise, is shifted and orientated towards the street access to receive the visitors.
A simple yet heterogeneous programme organizes the different uses in programmatic bands placed one next to the other, without interruption. Offices, changing rooms, garages and warehouses lead off in the space, gathering in legible bands as well in floor plan as in section, generating a particular outlined figure of variable section, an extrusion of the volume, where each part of the programme reaches the required height. The cut off that separates the administration band from the industrial one is a public terrace, linked to the management of the service.
A double height space in the entry to the building works as a vestibule and organizes in a clear and intuitive way the movement towards the different areas of the programme. A simple yet strong signposting reinforces the spatial organization of the programme, helping users to orient in the space.
The context described and the hybrid nature of the programme invited to design a unitary building, integrating its public condition into an industrial construction system. This functional diversity is submitted to the discipline of using a single material, corrugated steel plates, as a reference to the context, distorting the scale of the construction and creating a jazzy combination of brightness and reflections. For this purpose, doors and windows are fully integrated in continuity with the exterior skin by using the same perforated steel plates, a solution that also addresses the sunlight control and to protect from unwelcomed sights, allowing simultaneously an outdoor vision. The building, hermetic from the outside, receives plenty of natural light in the inside, combining openings protected with the perforated steel plates with the use of polycarbonate panels, reducing considerably the need of artificial light. Only the facade facing the access, made of polycarbonate and glass, opens to connect with the nearby environment.
All previously described results in the idea of achieving a well-balanced use of resources in the construction of the building, including all the details, which become more visible by their absence. Materials are clearly outlined occupying complete surfaces, always floor to ceiling. These materials used, a few and industrialized, that allow rapidity and efficiency, also make possible to reduce construction costs.
In the end, like in Madrid’s case, in an industrial estate, a grey box raises an architecture issue: the tension between the enclosure and the inner space articulated by light.