Faculty of Pharmacy in Ljubljana
Client: University of Ljubljana
Place: Ljubljana, Slovenia
Date: 2019 Competition, (Honourable mention)
Type: Education / Labs
Area: 19.546 m2
Budget: €48 milion
Alejandro Zaera-Polo, Maider Llaguno-Munitxa, Ivaylo Nachev, Claudia Baquedano, Carmen Gil Barbero
Our proposal for the new building for the Faculty of Pharmacy of the University of Ljubljana aims to construct its identity from its adjacency to the Tivoli Park and the Glinščica watershed, on the South border of the Western Rožnik Green Wedge. Our building will be literally covered in green. A simple façade system based on irrigated channels will surround the building envelope, turning the building into an ivy-covered mass in the banks of the Glinščica Brook and the Rožnik Green Wedge of Ljubljana. This will have a positive effect on retaining natural humidity and increasing environmental comfort through evapotranspiration, and turn the building into a continuation of the surrounding landscape, but it may also resonate with the association of ivy walls to higher education institutions.
The vegetation of the façade connects with deeply rooted traditions in Ljubljana, where planters installed on facades are a traditional form or decor. The ivy-covered facade is aimed to reflect the convergence between local ecology and global excellence, while providing crucial environmental performances. The building is ruthlessly modern in its organizational logic and efficiency, while the material palette and detail are deliberately picturesque.
The required programs have been distributed through the building in a gradient from more public and collective nature to those spaces that require calm and privacy. The distribution of programs follows a relation to solar exposure, placing the laboratories on the North-facing side, while the didactic rooms and offices have been located on the South volume.
In section, the building has been structured also following a gradient of publicness and scale of the rooms. Within the didactic block, the two lower plans are dedicated to classrooms and collective spaces for access. The two upper levels are occupied by the offices for the faculty and the researchers, which line up the exterior bay to provide more privacy, while the conference areas, administration and areas for exchange are opening to the atrium, which serves as common space for the collectives occupying the building.
The organizational structure of the building is dendritic and results from the articulation between the areas where knowledge is produced and the areas where knowledge is exchanged and communicated. The spaces for research require introspection and quietness, while the spaces for exchange gather larger groups of people and are boisterous.