Social housing in Madrid
These dwellings were included within the context of the city of Madrid's plan to promote social housing on the edge of the city through architectural competitions that were developed up until shortly after the beginning of the economic recession and the property crash.
Many of the designs that were constructed during the 1990's and the 2000's have created neighbourhoods with a large diversity of forms and materials, something that does little to foster a unified view of the architecture of the city. Ironically, we can state that many of these competition winning buildings and architects have contributed significantly less to the city than private initiative, which is motivated solely by money and speculation. These financial interests have helped to create a more unified vision of the city, although, it is necessary to point out that these are basic residential estates, a sterile fabric that overuses devalued or pastiche forms, which can be excessively monotonous, subject to poorly designed floor plans and have little concern for energy use, among other problems.
We present two projects here that are part of an urban plan in which some fifteen new buildings were proposed, each one of them chosen through open competition.
Motivated by the reasons outlined above, our starting point was compactness, volumetric simplicity and reference to the materials commonly used in the city of Madrid.
The first building was constructed with ceramics, proposing a revision of tradition by using a system of vertical ceramic elements, which became operable screens in front of the windows. By placing them both vertically and horizontally they provide rhythm to the elevation, with changing colour tones depending on the light angle.
The second building was finished with a coloured cement render with diagonal scoring which provided rhythm and interesting shadow effects. The elevation facing the square had lattices added to the balconies for shading purposes.