The new headquarters for BBVA go up on a site facing the A1 highway on the periphery of Madrid, surrounded by newly built offices, commercial buildings, and scattered residential developments. The site, undergoing construction works since 2010, is placed on the north of the main artery along which the city has grown, and where the new financial district is settled. When BBVA bought the plot eight partially built structures occupied a big portion of the land, and as much of the existing buildings as possible had to be incorporated into the new development.
The project, which will include the bank’s central offices for 6.000 workplaces, proposes an inward-looking building detached from the exterior conditions, creating an interior landscape of gardens and low-rise constructions that are laid over the entire site like a carpet, integrating the existing buildings in the overall fabric. This arrangement, analogous to an Arabian garden, generates a friendly city where communications are horizontal and through green spaces. Furthermore, the headquarters are divided into relatively small units so that employees can identify with their particular workgroup, and where maximized visual transparency generates a global sense of community.
The architecture resulting from the new urban fabric clearly addresses the climatic conditions of the site and naturally integrates the advantages of a Mediterranean construction: narrow inner gardens and streets, cantilevering floor slabs to provide shade or brise-soleils to prevent excessive sun. These aspects allow using glass in all the buildings – recessed from the facade’s edge – and bringing natural light inside. Brise-soleils are placed along the periphery of the complex and fixed in between the floor slabs. They are cut out in the lower part at an angle and at different sizes so as not to obstruct the views.
With the four towers of Paseo de la Castellana as backdrop, the new complex also includes a vertical reference to mark BBVA in the Madrid skyline. An oval-shape mass that appears to have been cut out of the carpet and tilted upward to become a slim tower, giving the new complex another type of office building with views across the city and to the mountains. This gesture also frees up space for a plaza with plants and communal facilities. Together, the plaza and the tower provide orientation to the entire complex.
BBVA – Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria S.A.
Arquitectos Architects: Herzog & de Meuron
Socios Partners: Jacques Herzog, Pierre de Meuron, Christine Binswanger, David Koch (socio responsable partner in charge).
Equipo de proyecto Project team: Nuno Ravara (asociado, director de proyecto associate, project director), Miquel Rodríguez, Stefan Goeddertz (asociados associates), Benito Blanco, Alex Franz, Mònica Ors, Thomas de Vries, Alexa Nürnberger, Manuel Villanueva, Enrique Peláez, Nuria Tejerina; Joana Anes, Abel Blancas, Ignacio Cabezas, Aurélien Caetano, Sergio Cobos, Soohyun Chang, Miguel Chaves, Marta Colón de Carvajal, Pastora Cotero, Miquel Del Río, Dorothée Dietz, Aurelio Dorronsoro, Margaux Eyssette, Cristina Fernández, Daniel Fernández, Alexander Franz, Alfonso García, Patricia García, Cristina Génova, Silvia Gil, Jorge Gomendio, Juan Manuel Gómez, Juan José González-Castellón, Ulrich Grenz, Hendrik Gruss, Carsten Happel, Guillaume Henry, Pasqual Herrero, Carlos Higinio Esteban, Dara Huang, Esther Jiménez, Hyunseok Kang, Yuichi Kodai, Lorenz Lachauer, Sophia Lau, Monica Leung, Christina Liao, Cristina Limiñana, Jorge López, Sara Martínez, Aram Mooradian, Natalia Miralles, Argel Padilla, Simon Pillet, Maki Portilla-Kawamura, Ainoa Prats, Jaume Prieto, Tosca Salinas, Alexandra Schmitz, Ursula Schneider, Mónica Sedano, Nicola Shunter, Kai Strehlke, Günter Schwob, Carlos Terriente, Carlos Viladoms; Virgilio Gutiérrez, Xavier Molina (supervisión externa external supervision)
UTE Nueva Sede BBVA: Drees & Sommer, CBRE FM Arq., Herzog & de Meuron SL (planeamiento general general planning); Herzog & de Meuron SL (diseño design architect); CBRE FM Arquitectos, Ortiz y León Arquitectos (arquitectos de proyecto project architect); Drees & Sommer S.L., Integral S.A. (mánagers de proyecto y diseño, aparejadores project and design management, quantity surveyors); Arup, BOMA S.L., INES (estructura structural engineering); Gerens Hill International (gestión de proyecto project management); Arup, Grupo JG, Estudio PVI (instalaciones HVAC, MEP); Vogt, Benavides & Laperche, Phares (paisajismo landscape); Ezquiaga (urbanismo urban design)
Arup, ENAR (fachada facade); Arup, Transsolar (física building physics); Karajan Ing (tráfico traffic planning); Arup, Grupo JG, Estudi GL (protección contraincendios fire protection); SMDOS (seguridad y salud safety consulting); Arup, Grupo JG, Estudio PVI (iluminación lighting); Estudi Acústic Higini Arau (acústica acoustics); DIMASA (gastronomía gastronomy consulting)