Architype Dialogue presents
Alfons Soldevila Barbosa, David Soldevila Riera, Alfonso Soldevila Riera
What was the most difficult issue about working within this building type or the most unexpected challenge that may have influenced new thought in your project?
In our case, the most difficult issue was to work with a 60 meter-deep void. The challenge was to avoid the vertigo effect in the glass lifts inside the void, and also the feeling of claustrophobia in the long and narrow platforms. This was a complicated challenge, not only from the architectural point of view, but also having to introduce all the systems and installations necessary in this type of building.
Did this project expand or evolve your role as an architect in any way? In general, do you feel that the role of the architect is changing on current projects?
The role of an architect does not only lie in qualifying and enriching space, but also in coordinating the different groups of specialists involved in a construction of this sort, in order to have a general control over the final result, always in favour and defending the space of people, the users, before the systems and installations.
How is your building possible today in a way that it may not have been before and how have trends in technology and society inspired new thought and solutions?
Solutions appear as a consequence and response to certain problems, such as maintenance, durability and anti-vandalism, which were deciding factors in the use of different materials.
Shape and appearance come as a result of understanding the characteristics, behaviour and work capacity of these materials, in accordance with the contemporary techniques, and always in favour of architectural space
In the context of this project, how is your office and design process being influenced by current trends in academic curricula and incoming young architects? In turn, how are current projects and processes guiding the ongoing reformulation and development of academic curricula?
Good design becomes of resolving certain problems and challenges in the best possible way, of understanding and using the different materials correctly, more than trends or fashions. Only solid ideas last in time. Nowadays, contents are given less importance in favour of image.
New technology and techniques are a magnificent work asset, but an image can never justify a project. The Vitruvian equilibrium of “Firmitas, Utilitas, Venutsas” should always be respected, conditioned by time and cost.
Architype Review thanks Alfons Soldevila Barbosa, David Soldevila Riera and Alfonso Soldevila Riera for their interview and for contributing to this collection of Architype Dialogue.