Space Tower, CTBA Cuatro Torres Business Area, Paseo de la Castellana, Madrid, Spain, 2004—2007

Torre Espacio, CTBA, Madrid, Spain


Promotor: GVM Villar Mir Group
Architect: Pei Cobb Freed & Partners
Local Architect: RFA Architecture
Structural Engineer: MC-2 Engineering
Landscape and urban design: Broadway Malyan
Floors: 56 + 6 underground parking
Area site: 7,500 m²
Constructed area: 74,325 m²
Primary Use: Office
Elevators: 27
Structure: Reinforced concrete
Location: Paseo de la Castellana 259D, Madrid, Spain
Architectural Height: 224,2 metros
Typology: Hybrid Architecture; Sustainable Architecture
Photographs: © José Miguel Hernández Hernández

Located at the northern end of the Paseo de la Castellana in Madrid, Space Tower appears as a large spiral in search of heaven. His design was chosen from among ten international proposals that were submitted in a contest with a restricted because it symbolized the client's wishes, "the tower is a natural element that has life, because it turns, grows and evolves." The work is part of a major urban planning project for the city called "Cuatro Torres Business Area (CTBA)", as a huge business park. The interesting project, originally named Madrid Arena, was built on the land where he was the former Real Madrid Sports City, and included the construction of four skyscrapers that would be linked by a large public square paved in turn connected by underground with the road network and urban transport through a new season, no doubt the four buildings have managed to give a new identity to this place.

Torre Espacio, CTBA, Madrid, Spain
up, beautiful picture of Torre Espacio from the huge public square that has more than 500 meters long, with the Crystal Tower Cesar Pelli design first. The winning design was chosen from private four finalists studies: Richard Rodgers, KPF Kohn Pedersen Fox, Helmut Jhany and Pei Cobb Freed & Partners, all true specialists in the construction and design of high-rise buildings.

Torre Espacio, CTBA, Madrid, Spain

The Four Towers Business Area CTBA Madrid have managed to modify significantly the skyline of the city, which had until the late twentieth century urban fabric horizontally markedly, and is also currently the tallest buildings in Spain. The four skyscrapers that make up the Madrid Arena are also called Bankia Tower, (formerly called Torre Caja Madrid and Torre Repsol), the Eurostar Madrid Tower Hotel, the Crystal Tower and Torre Espacio. The latter skyscraper, being the first of four to complete, since it was opened in 2007, won the title of tallest skyscraper in Spain at Hotel Bali in Benidorm, with its 186 meters high architectural had retained the title from 2002, when he beat the Torre Picasso (1982-1989), designed by the architect of the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York sadly destroyed the 11S, 2001, Minoru Yamasaki.

CTBA, Madrid, Spain, by jmhdezhdez

Torre Espacio design corresponded to architect Henry Nicholas Cobb, a founding partner of the prestigious architectural firm based in New York Pei Cobb Freed & Partners, who since 1955 have conducted over 200 major projects worldwide, including over thirty high-rise towers, such as the Bank of China Tower in Hong Kong, the John Hancock Tower in Boston, the Fountain Place in Dallas, Miami Tower in Florida or Tour EDF district of La Defense in Paris, among others. The Madrid office tower stands on a plot splendid 100 meters long by 75 wide. Its characteristic curved facade defined by trigonometric cosine mathematical formula y = cos (x). The use of this procedure not only helped save costs in the budget end of the play, but also greatly favored the making of the thousands of glass panels that make up the facade edgy and beautiful colors.

Torre Espacio, CTBA, Madrid, Spain

up, nice touch with the Torre Espacio Tower Bankia first. "From the building divided by fifty four equidistant horizontal planes each four meters and subsequently subdividing each of the circular sectors of the plant in an equal number of radial segments, resulting in that the successive intersections with the planes in height plant successive segments define a series of points along a vertical curve, which is precisely the cosine function ", this procedure defines the characteristic anthropomorphic figure eventually, so its iconic shape, modern and edgy green, make immediately recognizable in the skyline of Madrid.

Torre Espacio, (CTBA), Madrid, Spain, by jmhdezhdez
up, lifts kernel image at level 33. By accessing the tower on the ground floor at street level, three main vertical communication cores, low, medium and high, offer access to the different floors of Torre Espacio. The area under the floor gives access from 6 to 18, the average 18 to 33 and the upper area of ​​33 to 52, below, nice facade detail east of Torre Espacio halfway up.

Torre Espacio, CTBA, Madrid, Spain

"By profiling this slender skyscraper, we are inspired by the express wish of our client, to build not only an office building, but a building that had a symbolic and dynamic presence both at street level and in the Madrid skyline. Faced this challenge, we explored the potential of non-orthogonal geometries, used both in horizontal and longitudinal sections, to create an unprecedented structure. Torre Espacio evolves from a square at its base to two curved sections, formed by the intersection of two quarters circle at the top. geometric mechanism that enables the construction of this evolution is the cosine curve, which streamlines the points of intersection between the two curves and surfaces that allows the manufacture and installation of curtain wall. An important feature of the curve cosine is its index of curvature is not constant, but decreases gradually as one moves from the base to the summit. This gives the building its characteristic sensation resulting propulsion, almost as if it were a living organism that had arisen land on which it stands", Henry N. Cobb.

Torre Espacio, (CTBA), Madrid, Spain, by jmhdezhdez

up and down, two beautiful views from inside the building corresponding to 18 and 33 plants, 8 meters high, respectively. On the 18th floor, one of the pillars of the cafeteria was decorated with a curious sculpture that actually makes the function of a watch by the artist Tobias Rehberger, also, on the 33rd floor, as you can see in the picture bottom, a Freymann Alejandra mural decorates the lobby welcome in that plant and gives privacy to the restaurant as a screen. In addition, a huge mural of beautiful colors of artist Franz Ackermann decorates the lobby of 12 meters of the ground floor. The works of these three artists are inspired by the motives "sidereal" that give name to the Tower.

Torre Espacio, (CTBA), Madrid, Spain, by jmhdezhdez

The appearance of Torre Espacio is characterized by its geometric sculptural volume by the skin of translucent green glass. Starting from a square, approximately 42x42-meters, the office tower is reduced to half its surface that goes up eventually converging on one floor pointed at the top, the latter sector, which has been arranged diagonally to the square its base, has dimensions of 59 meters long x 30 meters wide, respectively. Due to changes in the geometry of the facade as this goes up and therefore make the plants are losing section, each floor of the tower is totally different. Also, two fully isolated stairways of the building in case of fire may have been strategically placed in the two corners of the square diagonally aligned with the core, however, the cuts that separate the exterior stairs of the main building in large recall As to those made in the front of the Miami Tower, designed by the same architect.

above diagrams representing Torre Espacio from different viewpoints that reveal the complex geometry used in the façade down schemes plant design and elevations based on the geometry of the cosine curve.

above, detail of the HVAC system by so-called cold or cool roof beam and active facade, which turned Torre Espacio in a brand new building green and sustainable bottom, in the context of the city, the Cuatro Torres Business Area is located at the foot of the Paseo de la Castellana aligned with the Torres Kio Philip Johnson design and the Obelisk of Santiago Calatrava's Box, absent in the latter rendering, both stationed in Plaza Castilla.

One of the most interesting characteristics of Torre Espacio is that depending on the perspective from which we observe it, due to its helical shape, this seems a totally different building, down plants and distribution sections at different heights to better understand the project concept. The eye-shaped plan that starts from the base and contains the core services, although going from half height sensing, is fully visible at the top. The structural design of Torre Espacio consists of a core of services and perimeter frame pillars, very common in this type of building high-rise office.

Plant 45 and Section Offices

Plant 33, Sky Lobby 2 and Lounges

Plant 16 and Section Offices

Ground Floor and Section

Torre Espacio is held in place by a super-structure of high strength concrete, also known as high performance, which made him one of the world's safest skyscraper, the reinforced concrete structure is much more resistant to fire a skyscraper made of conventional steel. Furthermore, solid slabs forged provide greater rigidity to the whole structure and give the building a better acoustic performance. Its core, so pointed located diagonally to the square of its base, contains three main sectors lifts, services and facilities.

above ground vertical communication scheme. Upon entering the building at the square you can choose the vertical transport sector-specific that you want to access: low, medium or high. The elevators that reach the upper floors correspond to the orange core, given the way helical owns the building and makes each section is losing ground as it goes up, only 6 of the 27 elevators with which the building has reach the plant 52, they start from the level 0 and the first stop corresponds to the plant 33. The pillars of the building, which is circular and vary in size, ranging from 1200 cm ∅. in the basement until the ∅ 60 cm. in higher plants. During its construction, in September 2006 a fire occurred between 40 and 42 plants which fortunately did not affect its structure. An outrigger that develops between 35 and 36 plants and consisting of a radial and perimeter walls, better help counteract the vertical loads and horizontal wind oscillations for the building are not as pronounced.

Torre Espacio, CTBA, Madrid, Spain

The facade of Tower Space consists of a curtain wall system with a double skin of translucent glass. The outer skin consists of a double glass with air chamber dehydrated high performance. The interior is comprised of a safety glass practicable on a frame for cleaning. This active facade composed of a hybrid system (air-water) by the so-called cold beam, achieved significant energy savings in the building. The hot air outside the offices entering through the floating floor, naturally rises to the ceiling, where it cools and uniformly low, bottom tower section with the legend of uses for each plant. The building volume is considerably reduced from half height upwards, ending at a plant in the form of eye. Some of the pillars closest to the curved curtain wall have been placed at an angle, and have the distinction of disappearing as the building goes up, you can see one of these pillars slanted at a plant and yet disappear in the next.

The building houses inside the offices of companies belonging to the embassies of Australia, Netherlands, United Kingdom and Canada as well as the offices of the Real Space SL and OHL Construction Company, among others. Besides the restaurants located on the 2nd floor and the lobby of the 33rd floor and the 18th floor cafeteria in the building included a gymnasium on level 1, a hairdresser and even a chapel on the 33rd floor, called Chapel Tower space, which is currently considered one of the world's highest church. The small church, with an area of ​​150 m² and can be used by any employee of the building, has a maximum capacity for 30 people, however, and as a curiosity, a permanent green light can be seen at night from the outside on the side North Tower, marking the place where the tabernacle on the 33rd floor.

Torre Espacio, CTBA, Madrid, Spain
Because inside the building were installed several embassies in nearby Torre Espacio have strategically placed stainless steel rods to prevent possible car bomb attacks. Also, interesting sculptures like Simeon Sitting in front of Francisco Leiro Torre Espacio, as you can see in the picture above, and The Girl of Manolo Valdés next to Madrid Tower Hotel Iberostar, or Gemini Blanca Muñoz, next to Bankia Tower, were added to beautify the great public square of Madrid Arena. However, a flag of Spain was crowned large after the tower opened.

Torre Espacio, CTBA, Madrid, Spain

Currently under construction is the new International Convention Centre, designed by Emilio Tunon and Luis Moreno Mansilla-sadly died in 2012 - whose peculiarity is that it has a form of semi-buried solar disk to be located on the west side of Annex to the Four Towers, specifically between the Eurostars Madrid Tower and Crystal Tower by César Pelli, in addition to the Four Towers.


All images Torre Espacio here
Drawings and part of text: © Pei Cobb Freed & Partners
"Images and text" Copyright © José Miguel Hernández Hernández
Editor, Escritor y Fotógrafo de Arquitectura /
Publisher, Writer and Architectural Photographer
Todos los derechos reservados / All rights reserved

Related works:

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Bank of China Tower
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Miami Tower
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