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21 dwellings refurbishment in Barcelona

High-end dwellings which preserve the original character of the property, improving its energy efficiency and incorporating green spaces.

Habitatges Passeig de Gràcia 30 a Barcelona
Habitatges Passeig de Gràcia 30 a Barcelona

Dwellings Passeig de Gracia 30 in Barcelona

The project proposes the building’s complete refurbishment, modernizing and adapting it to the new housing requirements, yet preserving the original heritage elements and recovering the building’s original spirit.

Authors

Batlleiroig Arquitectura. Enric Batlle Durany, Joan Roig i Duran, Albert Gil Margalef, Helena Salvadó Giné – Architect

Team

Josep Maria Navarrete, Irene Ayala Castro, Pablo Navas – Architect / Alba Puig Ros – Architect and landscape architect

Collaborators

G3 – Building engineers, BIS Structures – Structural engineering, JSS – MEP engineering, Aeland – Landscaping

Promoter

Twin Peaks Capital

Location

Construction company

Constructora del Cardoner

Project status

Built

Start date

2019

Finish date

2020

Total area

3.262 m2

Outdoor surface

545,60 m2
Outstanding location at the corner of Paseo de Gracia with Diputación street. / © Antonio Navarro Wijkmark

Barcelona’s Paseo de Gracia, the main arterial road of the city center, has witnessed the great changes the city has undergone throughout history. In its origin, the boulevard linked the walled city with the then-independent town of Gracia through portal del Angel. The greatest architects at the time built houses for Barcelona’s bourgeoisie there. As time went by, many of those homes became offices and stores appeared on the ground floor. Paseo de Gracia has become the grand commercial axis where all luxury brands want to have their flagship store. Currently, Paseo de Gracia is going back to its residential origin. Many of the offices move towards other areas of the city such as the 22@ district, where they find specialized buildings.

The building located at number 30, the commission received by the office, had also suffered many modifications and adaptations which made it lose its historical appeal. The original residential building was built towards the end of the 19th century. In the 1930s two floors were added and finally, Iberia’s headquarters settled in. Before the intervention, the building was vacant except for the commercial space on the lower levels, still occupied by an Inditex brand. These transformations erased its original morphology, as well as the ornaments expected for such building.

The houses have unbeatable views. / © Antonio Navarro Wijkmark

A NEW LIFE FOR AN OBSOLETE BUILDING

Refurbishing provides a new life to obsolete and inefficient buildings, instead of tearing them down. A basic goal for sustainability.

The project proposes the building’s complete refurbishment, modernizing and adapting it to the new housing requirements, yet preserving the original heritage elements and recovering the building’s original spirit.

The project redefines current housing layouts, transforming two symmetrical dwellings per floor into 4 dwellings with different sizes, reaching out to a broader scope of future inhabitants. The apartment’s interiors are equipped and finished with the highest quality materials adapting to the requirements of possible buyers. The doorman’s former house was located on the top floor – something very common for this sort of buildings – becoming now a unique penthouse enjoying a terrace with views towards Paseig de Gracia.

The common spaces have original restored elements. / © Antonio Navarro Wijkmark

RESPECTING THE HISTORY OF THE BUILDING AND IMPROVING ITS SUSTAINABILITY

Tradition and modernity are combined in the building, respecting original elements and improving the homes’ sustainability.

Original elements are restored and improved in the common areas: the Catalan vault staircase, stucco facing, or the wooden elevator, characteristic of the Eixample’s architecture. The existing small ventilation patios are added to the staircase core, adding natural light and improving the access to the new dwellings.

Thermal insulation has been improved to decrease energy consumption, adding ventilation systems and heat exchangers. These provided the building with a double-A sustainable building certificate.

TWO DIFFERENTIATED FACADES

The main elevation has been restored back to its original aspect after carrying out a chromatic study that re-establishes the original shades of walls and windows. Windows have been substituted by new wooden joinery preserving the elevation’s aesthetics but improving acoustic and thermal insulation. The solid areas have also added insulation to achieve a significant decrease in the building’s energy consumption.

The original interior elevation, however, had no historic interest, so all enclosures and openings were substituted. The design preserves the aesthetic of the Eixample elevation typology with
vertical openings, small balconies, wooden joinery, and shutters, combining traditional and modern aesthetics at the same time.

 

Refurbishing a housing building in an unbeatable location. 21 modern dwellings maintaining the building’s original character, improving sustainability, and adding green areas. Josep Maria NavarreteArchitect / Building / Senior Project Director
Vegetation stars in the renovated interior courtyard of the building. / © Antonio Navarro Wijkmark

QUALITY OUTDOOR SPACES

Gardening elements have been added to the roof, patio, and interior spaces. Vegetation plays an important role in the building’s renewal and improvement.

The roof becomes an area for community use with a swimming pool, creating a stronghold where you can isolate yourself from the bustle of the street, but enjoying unbeatable views of Paseo de Gracia and Barcelona in general. The inner courtyard is also transformed by converting the existing dividing wall into a green wall on a base of wooden strips that help to fix the vegetation.

The biggest problem for the construction process has been to carry on the construction process while the Zara Home store at the lower levels was open, limiting access to the site. The existing foundations had to be reinforced, without interrupting the functioning and sales of said business. All this has been accomplished thanks to proper construction management, execution process, and the cooperation between both ownerships.