The unearthing of the Rei Martí water storage deposit, built late in the 19th century, was accidental. The old cistern of the estate of the Torre Bellesguard, a work of Antoni Gaudí in Barcelona’s Sarrià-Sant Gervasi neighborhood, had been hidden beneath a pinewood until twenty years ago, when, in the course of some construction work around, a truck began to sink into the ground and it was verified, to everyone’s astonishment, that down there lay a 600-square-meter space.
The transformation of the deposit into a cultural facility sought to preserve its objet trouvé nature through strategies thought out to maintain and enhance the geometry and material quality of the place. First was the creation of an access, a ramp of imprinted concrete that gives the premises public visibility without altering the geometry of the space. Second was the upgrading of the upper layer of the vaults, with an outer surface of reinforced concrete 8 centimeters thick that connects the masonry structures and rigidifies the complex. Third was the cleaning of the cistern hall, with careful handling of the pillars of solid brick set 3.5 meters apart over Catalan vaults. To maintain the protagonism of ceramic, the surfaces were clad with pieces of wood inserted in a grid of galvanized wire, following a modular scheme which echoes that of the bond used in the vaults...[+]
Restauración y reconversión del Depósito del Rei Martí Restoration of the Rei Martí Cistern, Barcelona.
Archikubik (Marc Chalamanch, Miquel Lacasta, Carmen Santana) / Enllaç arquitectònic.
Jerónimo Steinger (jefe de proyecto project architect); Francesc Belart (arquitecto técnico quantity surveyor). Consultores Consultants: Atres80 (ingeniería engineering); Eskubi Turró Arquitectes (estructuras structures); David Casadevall (acústica acoustics); E-scentia (seguridad y salud health and safety coordinator).