The employees of the company Coca Cola Spain should work at a simple and exact headquarters. The ornament, the architectural formal detail, is out of place, the same as trying to give new silhouettes to the brand. We have always thought that the material must be used in a precise way, without anecdotes that may distract, but helping to the global comprehension, and detached with the incidental thing. The company cannot allow, as either the good architecture, be to the risk of the passenger modes.
The project consists of two buildings connected across the entrance vestibule, with wide free spaces that are opened towards the exterior terrace of events. This terrace is delimited by a façade in the shape of glazed heart, which constitutes the look of the building to the M40. “They will be employed at a headquarters opened to the world, in a building-jewel, which offers the better thing in his heart”. We were saying it in the contest”. We started working imagining employees satisfied with the frame in which they have to spend the day. The big free spaces, the sloping vegetable platforms, the landscaped zones, the events, the sport, are not our merit; they already were in the bases.
The work in the façades has been focused on a double aspect: to understand the requirements of the final client, very detailed in what concerns the energetic saving and the environmental aspect, and to assimilate this architectural idea of the building, respect it and give it importance. In this case it was not a question of justifying the regulation with a form imagined by the architect. The aim has been rather to interpret the requirements in a creative way, and to look for the constructive ideal solutions for every element of the façades. The building is opened to the city across the façade orientated towards the highway M-40. The apparent complexity of this façade is due to a visually complex geometry. The singular form is obtained by means of the draft in different positions of the louvers of trapezoidal glass, all equals, and the positioning at right angles of the brackets of steel that are used as support to the glass louvers.
The louvers are the response to the external hostile environment, sum of an adverse orientation (southwest), and the high level of noise of traffic. Therefore, the skin of louvers is not born as a formal imposition, but as a constructive response to the high requirements of solar protection and sound transmission reduction. The geometry in zigzag of the louvers has a structural sense. It is based on a system of bracing, where the glasses manage to stabilize laterally the brackets of steel where they rest, without needing of a horizontal substructure. Every louver is fixed in four points that work as kneecaps, allowing to the glass to turn in his ends. This solution reduces the concentration of tensions and improves his dynamic behavior, since it was possible to verify later in the endurance test to wind. The flexible unions act as natural absorbers, reducing the possibilities of the glass entering in resonance, essential aspect for structures of low inflexibility.
The glasses of the louvers have a silk-screen printing in two tones of green, with a variable density. The variation answers to a study of natural lighting, depending on the zones with major exigency of protection of solar radiation. The study contemplated the interaction between both façades to eliminate the possible problems of dazzle. The building proves to be more serious and sober in the rest of the façades. The apparent simplicity of the front hides a changeable adjustment to the environment and a conscious decision of not attracting the attention. These fronts solve the balance between solar protection and natural lighting by means of a studied proportion between zones of vision and opaque zones. The presence of a railway behind the plot, the changeable orientation of every façade, the safety requirements and the different uses, are parameters that every section of façade assumes without demonstrating an apparent change towards the exterior.
The Coca-Cola Headquarters obtained the Certificate Leed “Gold” in Commercial Interiors, becoming the first corporative headquarters which obtained it in the whole building. The criteria of sustainability in the use of materials, as well as in the reduction of the energetic consumption, was present from the competition.
Use of materials
In the construction they have used near 20 % of recycled, and materials low in organic compounds (avoiding the extraction of natural resources) and promoting his local origin, in which extraction of matter and manipulation before his putting in work they were less than 800 Km, which favors the local economy and issue unnecessary emission derived from his transport.
All the wood used in the project possesses the certificate FSC that is recognized by the certificate LEED that it grants the USGBC (United States Green Building Council).
At least in a 40 % thanks to diverse mechanisms of saving, as the reutilization and purified of gray and rain waters, the use of species of low consumption of water, and a buried system of drip irrigation that incorporates detectors of humidity and of rain. Reduction of energetic demand and increase of the energy efficiency. The air conditioning and ventilation is realized by means of a system. That allow an energetic saving estimated of 17-19 %. The installation of solar thermal and photovoltaic panels provides 70 % of the necessary energy to feed the installation of warm sanitary water, and a total of 24 kWp of photovoltaic power. The illumination system consists on captators and optical solar fiber and leds in the common areas.
The building is orientated to optimize the entry of natural light. The increase of the exterior perimeter with his form, allows having always less than 8 m from front to working places. The solar passive protection in façades (tents, estores, glazing properties) have been studied in detail.Location: Madrid, Spain
Architects: DL+A | De Lapuerta + Asensio SLP, Spain Categories: Office (inc mixed use), Structural Design – Glass (where used structurally)
Award: World Architecture Festival 2011 – Shortlisted