ISRAEL ALBA
architecture can
144 SOCIAL-HOUSING APARTMENTS

A tower block is not just the stacking up of repeated horizontal planes. A tower block has its own essence, its own form of expression, its own rules and its own mechanisms, of which one of the most important is its contact with the ground plane. Each tower block demonstrates the individuality possible within this class of building which is so characteristic of the 20th century and so contemporary. We opted for a compact layout in the shape of a cross, creating four vertical perforations (crevices) which allow a connection in all directions. Thus, all the units are set up to provide cross-ventilation across the four sides of the building. Only corrugated polycarbonate and prefabricated concrete with ventilated façade systems are used. A rigid central nucleus created by a double cross of concrete screens makes up the main structure of the tower block, supporting the reticular planes of the flooring and absorbing the horizontal force of the wind. We are freeing up most of the floor space to boost its flexibility for a range of potential uses over time. The proposed construction system, efficient in performance and with excellent lead times, results in significant savings. In view of the concept of the building as an accumulation of mass and shape, these tower blocks are proof of how form can work hand in hand with energy control to optimise the physical environment.

typology: Housing location: Hortaleza, Madrid area: 16.085 m² status: competition 2010 client: IVIMA (Instituto de la Vivienda de Madrid) TEAM:
principal architect: Israel Alba
associated architect: Mónica Domínguez
architects: Zina Petrikova, Ines Steuber
computer graphics: Ignacio Álvarez-Monteserín
Hortaleza, Madrid