Madrid Olympic Aquatic Sports Centre
Location: Madrid, Spain
Client: Madrid 2012
FOA Partner in Charge: Alejandro Zaera-Polo
Project Architect: Lluis Viu Rebes
Design Team: Manuel Clavel Rojo, Marco Guarnieri, Kensuke Kishikawa, Jordi Pages i Ramon
Services Engineer: Battle McCarthy, London
Quantity Surveyour: Manuel Iglesias, Madrid
Structural Engineer: AKT, London
Our proposal was to concentrate the project in a single, large, physical gesture capable of solving the spatial questions posed by the programme. Our analysis of the needs programme shows that the fundamental issue of this project lies in the resolution of a sports complex that, under normal conditions, would serve for a range of training and leisure sporting activities with a very small audience, and as a venue for sporting events with up to 20,000 spectators, if Madrid had won the bid for the 2012 Olympic Games.
The architectural gesture that will distinguish the complex is a 160m arch covering the series of pools, leaving space for the stands on either side of the containers, such that, with a system of temporary stands, the seating capacity could be expanded from the 8,000 permanent seating to a 20,000-seat temporary audience. In reference to water, the element that characterizes the chief activities of the complex, the roof arch is made with ten steel ribs which undulate along the plane of the arch.
By arranging the string of pools perpendicular to the service axes that frame the central buildings of the Olympic Ring, we provided the logistic connections and differentiated accesses for the press, athletes and VIPs below the public access level.