Located at San Bernardo Street in Madrid, ‘espacioveintenorte’ occupies the ground floor and the basement of a seven levels building date from 1915. It is an old storehouse restored by the architects to create an interesting place, all of it as a result of their personal interpretation of the place. The architects describe their intervention as the creation of a white backdrop where it is possible to write a new story full of events and activities reflecting the different profiles of the people living in Madrid.And it is feasible by means of a special combination of contemporary and old elements that reinforce the personality of the old building.
Multipurpose areas as an answer to the current time and the different posible situations are prepared not only to accommodate offices and places to work, to have lessons or to gather but also to hold social events or exhibitions. We can even find a temporary home, a sauna and a swing meaning the relationship between fun, culture and design.
The project gives two solutions that modify slightly the original appearance but with very different results.
The two main levels are organised in mezzanines using a combination of crossing perspectives where the relationship between the different areas is essential.
While the ground floor has pure lines and textures and the white color is predominant, we can find that on the basement the most important element is the original wall with an earthly coloured perimeter load that, with a thickness of 60 cm and a height of 4 meters, houses some characteristic skyligths which allowed to get the coal into and now they give natural ventilation to the storehouse.
The basement floor, plenty of natural light coming from an English courtyard is occupied by a multipurpose area opened to a working place where some transparent glass doors with a motorized track system allow to separate the boxes in the case of holding an event.
The upper floor presents white and polished surfaces in contrast to the roughness of the original area where the materials have been specially protected.
The stairs that connect the different levels play an important role and four different sections have been projected according to the area where they are placed.
There are hanging from tensioning cables steps, sheet metal covered steps like a continuous carpet or lights in between steps.
Although lightning is not the most important thing in the area it has also been specially cared and taken into account. The versatile LED lights and the automated Scena system improve the nature of the atmosphere each time.
We want to express our gratitude to all the companies that have collaborated in this project helping us to create this new concept of area: Simón Fluvia (illumination and automation), Saunapool (sauna and Turkish bath), Mármoles Luismar (countertops and natural stones), Antonio Franco Mármoles Madrid (pavement installation) Decoferro (locksmith), Aluinca (carpentry, aluminum and glasses), Aguirre Fontanería, DobleL Mobiliario, Carpintería Muebles Ébano Miguelturra, DobleC Serigrafía, Almacenes Poveda (materials, bathrooms), Geberit (bathroom installation), Emilma SL (brickwork), Gessi (bathroom fittings).
Although in the Ancient Rome the domus, whose floor was developed around the Atrium, that is, an opened courtyard where the family lived, was the main residential area, there were also more types of buildings for different uses.
The opposite was the Pantheon, the house for Gods, which had a completely different configuration. Before the Roman civilization both form and function had a close relationship. If we pay attention to the history we can see that type plant constructions with a specific use such as cloisters or cathedrals have always existed.
Form and function became to exist separated when the modern architecture began.
In the same way that in the current society mobile phones are used not only to phone but also to listen to the radio, to surf on the internet or to pay, buildings have to give an answer to the necessity of people to create multipurpose and flexible areas.
Architecture must be a part of the society, so, we have decided to open a study where another culture is possible in Madrid. The lost in thought study which only thinks about itself has dissapeared.
This new concept of architecture study answers to the necessity that all the architects have, that is, the feeling of belonging to the society we work for. We need to connect with other disciplines, people and ways of working in order to be interconnected and generate synergies.
We could define this project as the creation of a stage, a white backdrop where a lot of events and activities can take place reflecting the different profiles of Madrid’s people.