Dense Structure- Stressed Structures: Institute for Innovation in Infrastructure, Madrid, Spain
The city of Madrid is undergoing today one of its most important urban and infrastructural challenges; the burying of the M-30 ring highway has recovered the river Manzanares for the city and has created a linear park 7 km. long, connecting the historic center, where the Royal Palace, the Cathedral and the Opera House are located, with the west developments of the city integrating urban, landscape and infrastructural environments. The park is now under construction and needs to be complemented with facilities located at specific sites that will activate the area in different ways. Students will work in this energizing context developing an Institute for Innovation in Infrastructure at the river bank. Concrete will be the base material to build with, understanding its essence to manipulate it freely, from its liquid informal condition to its formalization into final prefabricated products. Clear structural systems will be designed working with these two opposite natures: from dense structures to stressed structures.Students will develop their projects in this real situation with freedom but trying to attach to this manifesto:1.Work with your hands, experience. Control the process better than the result. 2. Look for the origin of the processes, the raw materials, try to know the essence of the elements and construction systems. And this scientific understanding will enable a extreme freedom to operate outside the preconceived processes. Use industry at the service of architecture but not vice versa. 3. Conceive the space, design the construction accurately, play with the scale of the building elements to affect the scale of space; and the final form will be simply the result of following a clear strategy. 4. Move easily in the contradiction. And do not trust appearances. Heavy elements can build light and transparent spaces. 5. Do not ignore history, study and reread it. But use current technology and face actual problems in a contemporary way. 6. Structure is Architecture, which is not only entrusted with the important task of dealing with gravity, but also traces the space, frames the landscape, orders the program, expresses; and so, defines Architecture. Without dressings or disguise, with constructive honesty. 7. And above all, do. And if you make mistakes, learn. The perseverance in doing will keep you alive.