13-01-2003

MBM Group: University Citadel in Barcelona

Bar, University, Sport & Wellness, Offices,

Wood,

The architects in the MBM Group (Martorell, Bohigas and MacKay), who have been working on urban renewal of the Catalan capital for many years now, have managed to embody a quality concept of architecture in the Faculty of Humanities for Pompeu University, located near an old army complex in a strategic location between the historic city centre and the eastern Ensanche



MBM Group: University Citadel in Barcelona The main entrance is built to a larger scale, paved in brick and illuminated with streetlights so that it can host events of various kinds. The area is dominated by a central monument to professors persecuted by Franco's regime. While its spatial dynamics remain untouched, the overall effect of the entrance is diminished by a wood-panelled office building on the eastern side, the result of a sudden change of mind by the client, as is clearly evident in its summary construction, the inevitable result of a hurried attempt to solve an unfortunate last-minute decision.

Despite this difficulty the project is essentially highly significant, because despite its defects, it demonstrates the architects' ability to apply basic architectural principles to the requirements of public education in a well-measured form which harmoniously combines architectural work with intelligent recovery of an old military building, and planning work which makes it a part of the city.

Rosy Strati

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