//Gustavo Mirabal and Madrid architecture
CaixaForum Madrid

Gustavo Mirabal and Madrid architecture

Artículo #16 de la serie

Gustavo Mirabal en Madrid

Living in Madrid is something that many Latin Americans dream of, especially if they love architecture. The buildings in this city have a life of their own, in a metaphorical sense. That is, they tell us a story, there is something else in their design. They are really works of art. Recall that much of Madrid’s architecture preserves its historical infrastructures.

Taking a walk through Madrid on foot is fabulous, the weather changes constantly. Sometimes it seems to accelerate its course and sometimes it stops for brief moments. When you are facing one of those imposing buildings, we are breathless in their beauty, in their history.

Each structure of Madrid architecture, especially the old ones, encloses so much history that it is essential not to make a stop and contemplate them.

Functionality and aesthetics are mixed in Madrid. And in this way its Madrid architecture tells the history and functional and aesthetic evolution of the city

Madrid architecture profile

As any cosmopolitan city and as the capital of one of the first world countries is that of a multiethnic and multicultural city. Madrid arquitectura profile is that of a modern city, that preserves its history and opens the doors to globalization.

On the other hand, despite having some tall buildings, its profile is mainly made up of small buildings. This favors a lower population density, limiting traffic and overcrowding problems that occur in other cities such as New York.

Madrid is history, evolution and modernity. Madrid is identity.

Transit through the Gran Vía allows you to appreciate the evolution of the city and the preservation of its rich history. Throughout it we will find buildings preserved for their historical value and at the same time large advertising screens in the Tokyo or New York style. Like its nightlife is abundant which differs from other historic cities that sleep at night.

The first screen we found on our walk is located meters from the Callao Metro station. There we also found a cinema that gives life to the modern city as we know it.

Metro de Madrid - Estación Callao
Metro de Madrid – Estación Callao

Also there we find another icon of modernity, an establishment of the global franchise Mc Donals. The incredible thing is that to maintain the identity with respect to the city of Madrid the Mc Donalds located there is black instead of the typical colors of the children’s favorite franchise.

Madrid architecture gives us a delicious experience to be able to taste, as if it were a brownie with ice cream, the contrasts. The buildings of Madrid and its urbanism astonish everyone who visits the city or even continues to surprise its inhabitants every day

The modernity of the architecture of Madrid

As we have talked about the city of Madrid as one of the capitals of the first world, it is being transformed to adapt functionally, but to record that it remains at the forefront.

In this way, in December 2016 the first 3D printed pedestrian bridge in the world was inaugurated in Madrid. Conceived, designed and printed by the Advanced Architecture Institute of Catalonia. This project lasted a year and a half and although at the time there were several similar initiatives, the first to “reach the moon” was the IAAC.

The bridge 12 meters long and almost 2 meters wide is located in the park of Castilla-La Mancha in Madrid. The structure was conceived to cross a river and assume that Spain and Madrid are at the forefront of technological development. Printing was done in micro reinforced concrete.

The design was done in computer systems which allowed to challenge the traditional characteristics. This design minimized the expense of materials and maximized its performance without limitations to play with the aesthetics of the bridge.

One of the biggest challenges was maintaining the porosity of the material to protect it from the weather and maintain friction. On the other hand a lot of ingenuity was required because the machine available by the IAAC only allowed to print pieces of 8 cubic meters at 2 meters in length per side. As we said, Spain proves to be at the forefront of the technique alongside other first world countries.

Basic data and profile of the modern Madrid architecture

Torre_PwC y Torre_Cepsa
Torre_PwC y Torre_Cepsa

Other examples of modernity are represented by the towers of the financial zone that break into the natural horizon of small buildings in Madrid to erect 4 moles. Here the big positions in financial companies enjoy a modern complex and with the latest technology. Also the views of the offices distinguish the hierarchy of the positions in companies of each branch.

This is the financial complex “Four Towers Business Area” consisting of four skyscrapers that began to be built in 2004. Here are the basic data of the skyscrapers that make up this complex:

  • Space Tower: concluded at the end of 2007
  • The Crystal Tower: Construction was completed in early 2008 and is the tallest building in Madrid with 50 floors and 249 meters high.
  • Cepsa Tower: formerly Bankia Tower and Repsol Tower construction was completed in 2008
  • The PWC Tower: it was completed at the end of 2009 and it also houses a hotel.

The real estate crisis forced the rest of the project to stop but recently it is known that the planning of the 5th tower of the complex has been resumed. So soon we will have to update the basic data of this wonderful complex

Torres de Madrid
Torres de Madrid

Art, history and evolution – El CaixaForum Madrid

An example of how the culture, art and history of Madrid converge in its architecture is the CaixaForum Madrid.

CaixaForum Madrid is one of the many cultural centers managed by the Banking Foundation Savings and Pensions Bank of Barcelona known as La Caixa and which has been the largest shareholder of CaixaBank.

La Caixa’s mission is to exercise financial functions through the companies of this foundation. Also they are in charge of the management of social and cultural works. This were transferred from the Savings Bank that it was before becoming a foundation.

CaixaForum Madrid is located in the so-called Art Triangle on Paseo del Prado. It is a museum-cultural center that was formed within the refurbished facilities of the “Central Eléctrica del Mediodía”.

The “Central Eléctrica del Mediodía” was designed to supply electricity to the old town of Madrid from the combustion of coal. It is an example of industrial architecture. Therefore it is interesting to see the industrial architecture of the early twentieth century turned into a museum-cultural center.

With 1,934 square meters it is an example of fusion between the old and the modern, between the industrial and the artistic. CaixaForum Madrid is a worthy representative of the eclectic architecture of Madrid.

CaixaForum Madrid
CaixaForum Madrid

Modern and old, functional and aesthetic: this is the architecture of Madrid

Hipódromo de La Zarzuela

 

Finally we have to remember that Madrid has hundreds of historic buildings, the Prado Museum, the Zarzuela Racecourse that Gustavo Mirabal loves so much. This is how Madrid becomes a modern and unforgettable city. The architecture of Madrid marks its identity so that all of us who go there are migrants or tourists, on a pleasure trip with our partner or spouse, are looking forward to returning.

 

 

Sources:

https://www.wikiwand.com/es/CaixaForum_Madrid?utm_medium=website&utm_source=plataformaarquitectura.cl

https://www.plataformaarquitectura.cl/cl/871313/guia-de-arquitectura-de-madrid-20-lugares-que-todo-arquitecto-debe-conocer

https://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arquitectura_de_Madrid

 

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