Workplace for Strategic Areas revitalises historic Barcelona condominium block

Spanish studio Workplace for Strategic Areas has refurbished a Nineteenth-century housing block in Barcelona, unlocking a beforehand uncared for yard house with a brand new public courtyard linked by criss-crossing metallic walkways.

The block, known as La Carboneria, sits inside Barcelona’s Eixample district, recognized for its well-known gridded city plan designed by Ildefons Cedrá.

La Carboneria was refurbished by Workplace for Strategic Areas

Through the design of the housing block, its location was topic to plans by town to chop by way of the district with massive, large boulevards, much like the city plans applied in Paris in the course of the Nineteenth century.

When plans for a few of these grand boulevards have been scrapped, La Carboneria was left with a “ghost facade” that was later enclosed by new buildings to kind a darkish, triangular courtyard at its rear.

Interior photo of La Carboneria
The constructing had been deserted since 2014

Madrid-based Workplace for Strategic Areas, led by architect Ángel Borrego Cubero, was tasked with reconfiguring the considerably awkward city situation of the condominium block, which had been left empty following the eviction of squatters in 2014.

“[The original architect] was pressured to plan facades to all 4 sides of the constructing, not sure the place the primary streets could be and which one his constructing would face,” defined the follow.

“Over a century and a half later, the facade that confronted the never-built boulevard needed to be recovered, its bigger home windows unblocked, even when they now missed two intersecting occasion partitions as a substitute of Barcelona’s model of the Champs Elysées,” it continued.

Image of La Carboneria
Crisscrossing pathways result in flats

Creating a brand new public house on the rear of the constructing, the block’s stairwell and carry core was relocated out of the constructing and related again into the newly opened facade by metallic walkways.

This organisation creates a brand new double-aspect situation for the flats that now face the general public courtyard to the rear and the road on the entrance. A rest room and storage block aligned with an current load-bearing wall sits on the centre of the constructing.

“The constructing appears to have been turned inside out. Its most hanging facade is hidden inside a triangular courtyard and, to make it accessible, its stairwell and elevator have been moved from the within of the constructing to the furthest nook of this patio,” defined the follow.

“The walkways that be part of each parts make the patio work as a stunning, tridimensional public house for the neighbours,” it continued.

Interior photo of an apartment
The constructing has a uncooked and unfinished look

As a lot as potential, the unique construction of the condominium constructing was retained and bolstered, with solely the roof needing changing.

Contained in the flats, traces of the outdated constructing – equivalent to wooden beam ceilings and uncovered brick partitions – have been refinished and painted. These are juxtaposed in opposition to up to date parts together with wood panelling and brightly tiled flooring within the kitchens.

Interior image of an apartment
Workplace for Strategic Areas retained loads of the present construction

“Though the heritage laws relevant allowed us to intestine out the complete constructing besides the facades, the unique construction of the constructing was preserved as a lot as potential,” stated the follow.

Different renovation tasks accomplished by Workplace for Strategic Areas embrace the transformation of a former industrial constructing in Madrid right into a workspace for inventive startups.

Elsewhere in Barcelona, Parramon + Tahull renovated an condominium within the metropolis’s Gracia neighbourhood and added birch plywood joinery and ceramic tiling

The pictures is by Simona Rota.