This proposal is to be incorporated to the series of singular interventions laid out along Nervión river, adequate to the territorial scale and the landscape features of the river that borders the city of Barakaldo.
Within its process of urban, social, and economic regeneration (an obsolete industrial area turned into a new residential neighborhood), Barakaldo is nowadays literally redefining its own laws, by the construction of a new urban system. Such process could be interpreted undoubtedly as an ecological one: a complex assemblage of resources, species and fluxes operating in multiple circuits of transmission.
Therefore this project must operate within a city in which the limits between artificial and natural are already blurred. A city conceived as a second nature where shifting ecological systems are introduced in time.
It is a system what is proposed in this project, an organization of space in which landscape, infrastructure and urbanism are aligned and mixed.
Territorial patterns of occupation induce the activation of urban and domestic spaces in this, by unpredictable relations amongst its parts. What is stressed is precisely the space updated by the mutable relation amongst stable points.
The variable uses that may unfold along this spatial net are organized around a fixed structure. This structure provides the necessary conditions to activate different groups of relation.
This shell works like an infrastructure connecting all the project elements. It holds and shelters the dwelling units and community facilities, containing and distributing all electrical, water and gas supplies.
Collective spaces are located on the lower elements’ roofs. High platforms, and the stripes facing south that tie both elements, contain solar energy panels and rain water collectors.
This way, both groups of surfaces share both groups of uses.
Thus, in this project, the logic of connectivity is far more relevant than the logic of spatial subdivision. A basic initial structure and a game logic of relation among parts are first proposed. These determinations allow unpredictable activations and the modification of such relations in time.
The project organization generates a net of interconnected community spaces. These places, the platforms covering the group of low blocks, form a continuous sequence that can be reached from every apartment.
Two kinds of platforms usable in various ways are laid out: green plateaus (ecological garden roofs, with an excellent bioclimatic response), parks with playgrounds, fruit and vegetable gardens, orchards... where is also possible camping or playing mini golf. And paved plateaus, where different sport fields are superimposed. Bicycle circuits and routes cover this spatial net open to any activation.
Nowadays, the site is mainly an infill land peninsula. This is why it is decided to only build over water level, above the ground, to avoid problematic waterproof underground structures.
A considerable portion of the proposed site available land is to be gained to the Nervión river. In order to evidence this radical artificial-natural transformation of the land, it is decided to separate both areas by a small river. The resulting platforms are tied by the lowest segments of the building, acting as staples or bridges between both of them. Each platform would incorporate its own topographical and vegetation characteristics.
Starting by a general strategy of site occupation, a generic organization incorporates a series of constraints, adapting itself to the specific dynamics of these site conditions. This way, two groups of information are introduced in the project.
Dwelling organization follows the same project logic.
Nowadays the house must not lodge definite space, but neutral usable volumes. It must give space to activities outside the strictly domestic, like working or practising sports. It requires a large storage capacity (weekly shopping, leisure equipment, and portable apparatus). Wardrobes, cooking units and bath units are laid on technical slabs on which are plugged in. The location of these elements defines spaces, but not the use that is to be made of them. These groups of relation are relocated on every housing type, depending on its surface and location. The basic equipment included on each unit has the possibility to be improved in time in relation to the inhabitant necessities. For instance, perfectible windows may incorporate double insulation, solar protection and solar panels.
These devices transform domestic space in response to the inhabitants desire to precisely configure their home, desire that changes according to the age, type and number of dwellers.
Nevertheless, nowadays as householders become increasingly prepared to change their houses for locational reasons and personal reasons, then the role of a house as a long-term adaptable living box is not so relevant any more. Instead, is the capacity for the house to enrich possible and desirable activity patterns for all occupants over a 24-hour cycle. It is with these aims in view that the proposed houses are designed.