site_header_zone


 
Trending
Timeline: 30 Years of Hall of Fame
  Guess who just celebrated a big 3. . .0? Hint: ...
Onward and Upward: 38 Breathtaking Images from 2014
This year’s architecture, interiors, fashion, and art reached new heights. In ...
5 Emerging Product Designers of 2014
It is undoubtedly a great time to be a designer. ...
Year in Review: 20 Design Moments That Defined 2014
  Be it unexpected shifts in power, the loss of ...
10 Questions With... Alberto Alfonso
Cuban-born architect Alberto Alfonso, AIA, helms his eponymous, 30-person firm ...

JOB ZONE

jobseekers:

employers:

 
Weekly Poll
Where is the greatest growth potential for healthcare design in the next 2 years?

    industry_article_detail_left_zone

    Hi-Tech Tile Points to Spain's Bright Future

    Five cylindrical buildings clad in colorful ceramic tile comprise the Children's Education and Innovation Center, located in the heart of the Technology Park of Paterna in Valencia, Spain. The park contains over 450 companies that all together employ nearly 8,000 people. As these numbers continue to rise, so does the need for easily accessible day care.

    The Foundation for Innovation in Childhood of Valencian Community, an organization formed by companies headquartered in the park, commissioned Foursquare Arquitectos to design a children's center promoting creativity, educational innovation and socialization. Last but not least they tasked the architects with integrating sustainable technology. Lead architect Ana Garcia Sala teamed with M2 Distribución and Natucer of Tile of Spain to bring the $5.5-million project to fruition.

    The curved edges on the buildings' exteriors and interiors were inspired by observing children at play. “The rounded shapes lack sharp edges, promoting a comfortable, social environment for the children," says Sala. "This allows even the youngest to lean along the walls without fear.”

    Tile manufacturer Natucer used new technology in glazing to achieve the curved facades. The tiles went through a single-fire baking process at 1195ºC (2183°F) in order to obtain the necessary width of 5.3 inches and bowing radius of 33.5 inches. They were then stapled to a metal substructure of slotted tracks covering panels of aluminum and mineral wool.

    While the school of colorful buildings makes a strong visual statement about forward-thinking education, the center's carbon footprint is minimal thanks to geothermal energy, exterior solar panels, and resin-treated floors that help to regulate temperature.

    industry_article_detail_central_zone