The Caniles’ granary is an elementary storage building from the 18th century (1768 data graphed on the foundational brick located in the existing vaults). The existing grain distribution channels presented issues in some regions, which is why the state, to solve this situation, in 1756 declared the freedom of prices and the free circulation of cereals, which incurred into a rise of the construction of new grain stores, and thus allowing the distribution of grain among the less affluent classes of society at times of greatest scarcity. In the spatial emptiness of the facility, in presence of a dense log beam and an oversized space, the spectator's surprise is assured. This great pantry is nothing more than a powerful air space that saves humidity, a volume defined by thick ventilated walls to store grain and regulate the city's hunger.
It is an isolated building, which occupies part of the corner of a block, thus it faces two streets and a patio at the back, with its main access through Pósito street. It has a rectangular floor of 31.00 by 12.50m and a maximum height of 11.00m.
It is structured around a central part, initially higher, generating a compositional symmetrical axis, with the two lateral wings. In the central part is the main door whose doorway is simple, with an elliptical arch, alfiz and pilasters with a Bourbon coat-of-arms and a window above it. Behind that door there is a vestibule that distributes the different spaces. This is crowned by a four-sided roof, at the top of which is a weather vane sits, already restored. The building went through various modifications over time that have hidden its typology. These alterations have been emerging while the building was used for other functions.
At first, as more space was needed, the left side nave was increased in height, rising even above the main entrance body that articulates the two naves, dividing itself into two bodies, by means of an intermediate floor.
The building was conceived as a warehouse for perishable agricultural products, for which storage areas were raised from the ground to preserve the products from humidity. This was accomplished by obtaining an upper level of the building's ground by means of its elevation based on cannon chambers. From the remains found and after reading it, it has been possible to verify that initially it had two functional areas. One of an administrative nature that occupied the central body. This area is the entrance hall where the control of the material to be stored was produced, giving way to the storage area that is located in the back and in the side ships to this. The central body is divided into two floors connected by a staircase that is located on one of its sides, which connects with the room of the butler responsible for the Granary.
The nave located in the left wing, originally of the same length as the right wing, was enlarged in its dimensions, expanding, and rising above the main body where the compositional axis of the building is located, changing both the image and the exterior volume of the Granary. These are volumes that are relatively set in the global vision of the property. All these changes are manifested in the facade, with the formalization and execution of the new openings together with the modification of the surrounding urban fabric. Afterwards, the original structure is altered, but this time in a crude and traumatic way, since the building had an intermediate slab and an added access staircase on its left side. In addition to these primary functions, other functions were later concentrated in the rooms on the left wing: a public meeting space, school, theater, etc.
Starting from the initial idea of Antonio Jimenes Torrecillas and as a tribute to his worth as an architect, we have tried to add our professional experience in the knowledge of heritage and the trade that gives a long career in the field of architecture, to transform the initial approach, without losing sight of the architectural virtues that he was able to see in the building, hoping that Antonio would share our decisions.
The intervention strategy goes hand in hand with the significant elements, both physical and symbolic, that gives value to its biography and the evolution of its construction phases, its successive uses and the primitive void that was the raison d'être of this construction. The idea is that the viewer can understand part of the transformation process of the building and its spatial recovery.
At all times there are references to this volumetric transformation or use, with nuances in the finishes of the walls or with the remains of previous stages (paintings, wrought iron, textures, etc.) but without losing the idea of the whole, playing The treatment of light plays a decisive role, together with the textures and finishes.
That is why the building strips itself of additions and recovers its height through a coalition between structures, where each trunk supports what is necessary to solve the spatial slenderness, highlighting the glass sheet that emphasizes, even more if possible, the permanent value of the matter and personality of each of these singular trunks. Artificial light also sustains with its nuances the process suffered by the now recovered building, playing a leading role.
Designer architects: Antonio Jiménez Torrecillas, Antonio García Bueno, Rafael Romero Quiñones
Project Manager Architects: Antonio García Bueno, Rafael Romero Quiñones,
Technical architect Director of work execution: Francisco José Ibáñez Moreno, Technical Architect.
Health and safety coordinator during construction phase: Damián Jesús Molino Garrido, Technical Architect.
Collaborators: Francisca Asensio Teruel, Jorge García Valero, Technical Architect, Juan Manuel Fernández Cañedo, Industrial Engineer.
Jesús Hernández Martos, Higher Technician in Application of Construction Projects. Rubén Sánchez Gallego, Archaeologist. Pilar Aragón Maza, Heritage Restorer and Conservator.