Contemporary

The search for almost completely continuous glazing across the façade has led to a potential fire hazard through the possible spread of fire between floors. In this case, this problem is solved by offsetting the glass panel by several centimetres. 

A group of residential buildings in Torrelago district, Laguna de Duero (Valladolid), has been refurbished in the context of the European Programme CITyFIED: Replicable and Innovative Future Efficient Districts and Cities. The renovation addresses both the image of the buildings and energy factors. 

This rain screen façade clearly demonstrates evolution along the path to prefabrication. Both the interior and exterior layers are built with highly prefabricated dry systems and it is not so common to find such a massive solution. This enables the façade to loose neither its thermal inertia nor reduce the acoustic barrier.

The inner layer, which uses heavy concrete panels, is a very good option.

Composite façade panels are nothing new. They are there, waiting for the moment when the market will be ready to welcome them since the last decades of XX century.

The technology is already developed and essayed as those materials are perfectly used in many other applications. Maybe the cost, maybe the origin of the material (glass-fiber reinforced polyester), maybe we have not found yet its advantatges in building construction.

In the same way that we wonder whether the chicken or the egg came first, we could ask ourselves who takes the first steps in innovation: the architect proposing new solutions, or the industry developing them?. In most cases, developments in industry respond to new approaches suggested by architects. 

The building is very correct and discreet. The system was innovative at the time and in that place. Let us just mention something that, although obvious, always attracts our attention in this type of construction: the succession of technical fabrics that accompany an apparently simple construction. The issue is that building with brick has benefits that we are not aware of until we lose them: the material is inert, the mechanism of union between pieces guarantees the sealing of joints. Losing performance in the main façade layer means entrusting it to added elements.

This residential building in Barcelona is highlighted on account of the overall strategy that has been used to solve this particular structural system. It is one of the first examples of the work of this team of architects that shows a design approach based on the optimisation of prefabricated elements according to a well organised arrangement of the floor plan.

There is little to say about such a glass façade. A steel-profiles mesh covers everyday life like a blanket.

Load bearing facades are nowadays a common solution due to the permeability they permit in the inner space. Some of those structures are let to be seen from the outside, some of them are not. 

The Hotel Constanza is part of the Illa Diagonal complex. Like the main building, the facade is covered with a travertine rain screen. The narrowness of the drainage cavity is striking, but is interrupted by the lack of cleanliness of the insulation surrounding the fixings.