The design of the airport control tower Lleida-Alguaire (Lleida) is designed as a singular work that goes beyond the structure, encompassing and integrating architecturally the projects of the terminal and the outbuildings. In it, the architecture responds equally effectively to the requirements of aviation, territory and landscape. Tower and base will have a total area around 3.742 m2.
The tower is a 41 meters high building, consists of two main volumes: the tower, which houses the specific functions of aircraft control and immediate services; and the base, which receives the administrative, technical and storage uses. Base and tower will be joined by the curve that draws the cover on the ground floor and becomes the facade of the tower. This cover extends to merge into the same structure and in harmony with the social structure, which initially will host the first terminal and the technical buildings.
The tower rises above the base with a rectangular structure of 8 x 21 meters divided over 9 floors. The first six plants form the core of movement; while from the seventh to the ninth anticipate the administrative and technical uses such as offices, meeting rooms and radio links, markers or equipment. Crowning the volume, there is an octagon of 4.5 meters per side x 4.7 tall.
The base is a volume of 22 x 28 meters and 4.4 meters high. The ground floor will host the entrance hall, several administrative offices, meeting rooms and warehouses. To this base will join the first terminal and other outbuildings. Both volumes are connected by vertical circulation.
The building’s visual unity is achieved also with the whole front cover with several green, brown and yellow metal sheets that will contribute to their integration with the surrounding landscape. The cover (horizontal continuous cover) will have vegetal layer combined with stripes of wood and veneer. It is proposed to use a vegetal cover that emulates the vegetable-farming plot environment, and also acts as a thermal barrier.
The main envelope is conceived as a continuous blanket covering the most visible faces of the building (covering the base and longitudinal side of the tower) to give formal unity to the whole and consolidating its presence into the context. For this reason, the deck floor, on both sides of the tower, curves becoming the facade of the tower. Both planes (horizontal and vertical) have different functions and structure but they share formal and material characteristics that make them act as an individual item.
The facade will be worked in different ways between the faces of the tower. At the longitudinal level, it proposes a double skin: an extension of the exterior and first floor deck (vertical plane of the continuous bound). This skin, in light material, will provide sun protection through horizontal slats of aluminum and shall overlap the full height tower. On the upper floors there will be an inner skin of glass and steel joinery. Meanwhile, the sides are different: the side where the kernel is it is closed with a tiling of prefabricated concrete panels; the opposite, with vertical strips of aluminium.Location: Alguaire (Lleida), Spain Architects: b720 Fermín Vázquez Arquitectos
Engineering: Aertec Gross floor area: 3.742 sqm Competition date: July 2007
Completion date: September 2009