Madrid Pavilion at Expo 2010
Location: Shangai, China
Client: Fundación Madrid Global
Date: 2010 Completion
Total Area: 2,800m²
Budget: €4.8 million
FOA Project Architect: Alejandro Zaera-Polo
Project Architect: Pablo Ros
Design Team: Robert Berenguer, Pep Wennberg, Ravi Lopes
The Madrid Pavilion at the 2010 Expo in Shanghai applies strategies originally developed for Carabanchel Social Housing (Bamboo House) in Madrid to this project in Shanghai. In addition to translating, adapting and improving the original design, this project aims to rebuild the original building mimetically. Where the Carabanchel Social Housing project was regulated by a set of specific residential constraints, the main design strategies of the Madrid Pavilion include its diverse programme requirements, different user groups, how the space will be perceived and the orientation and structure of the building for this particular location.
Given the variety of uses required by the pavilion, the proposal here was to detect and sectorise the architectural programme’s functions according to each one’s specific visitors. Therefore, the space is divided into public spaces for exhibition visitors and users of the public areas, professional areas, private spaces for VIPs and areas for staff including the kitchen, gift shop and storage facilities. These are located over 5 levels and the roof, organised around a large central atrium are which hosts the exhibition. The exhibition itself organised around the walk through the building.
Visitors enter the exhibition via an escalator leading from outside directly to the 4th floor, which is where the exhibition begins. This floor is designed as a promenade which descends directly into a large central atrium space, creating a sense of spectacle. The atrium provides an open visual experience, allowing visitors to perceive the entire pavilion (including closed-off professional and private areas) during their descending journey through the building. Like the Bamboo House, the Madrid Pavilion is enclosed with bamboo louvers mounted on folding frames. However, where the original project used its louver system to create a skin which could be differentiated by the inhabitants’ desires, the Madrid pavilion’s bamboo skin is configured to provide passive energy control, making it an exterior space of energetic interchange.