VIDEO (by the team)
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1. How do you define the main issue of your project in relation with the theme “Living Cities Imagining architecture taking care of the milieus”? And in which way do you think your project can contribute to an ecological and/or social evolution?
Lochau identity is built on images where the natural environment, and the relationships between water and land are essential. Moreover, it is created from green and constructed archipelagos defining its polyedric character. The topic “Living Cities” has informed our proposal on several levels:
- Reconsidering the pre-existence (natural and cultural) as an identity value to preserve.
- Implementing strategic approaches to reinforce its biodiversity while providing ecosystemic services.
- Establishing a cohesive network of outdoor, indoor and intermediate spaces that work symbiotically to create a physical and emotional framework to develop social activities.
2. How did the issues of your design and the questions raised by the site mutation meet?
The ecosystemic richness of the shores reveals the vulnerabilities of our living world and the interdependent relationship between nature and culture, ourselves, our artifacts and everything beyond the human realm.
At an urban scale, our proposal consistently defines the condition of natural landscape interlaced with the urban town by re-naturalizing the waterlines and pathways. It also softens the mobility by connecting the horizontal set of pedestrian pathways and multiplying safe crossing points of the fast circulation.
At the harbor, our proposal creates an ambitious public resource following 3 objectives:
1.To preserve the Alte Fähre by sheltering it from the rough weather conditions and prevent its further deterioration
2. To provide an appropriate space for all the required uses
3. To allow free access, a possibility of appropriation of the space as architecture and the city are not consumer goods.
We always approach the projects by thoroughly exploring the context and identity, aiming to grasp the intricacies of the milieu. We emphasize the importance of the collective memory and strive to respond in a contemporary manner by reimagining archetypes tailored to each specific case. In this occasion, we identified the requirement of protection and preservation, but above all the possibility to reconsider the obsolescence of a beloved icon of the city. Our proposal suggests a shelter that doubles as a public space, capable of adapting to contrasting conditions throughout the year - becoming an interior garden during winter and a shaded exterior during the increasing hot summers.
The proposal, willingly pushes the limits of the current regulations, aiming to open the debate of the current and future uses of the public land in Lochau. We advocate for inclusive discussions involving various stakeholders in urban interventions. Our belief is that Lochau’s harbor holds untapped potential to transform into a hub of communal activity, beyond its sailing and bathing current functions. Therefore, we suggest providing the city with a platform and an opportunity to engage in conversations its contemporary values and collectively determine what they want the Alte Fähre to become.
We (Carmen Torres and Pau Sarquella) have been working together as a studio for more than 10 years now. For this competition, we were joined by 3 talented young architects: Alicia Marco, Jerome Lorente and Joana Plana. They collaborated both in the discussions and the production of the documentation.
6. How could this prize help you in your professional career?
Europan represents for us as a chance to expand the scope of our research and projects. To prospect of being awarded is thrilling because it allows you to be part of the essential debate on the contemporary urban dynamics. I also provide the opportunity to test our ideas against reality, fostering continued exploration. We’re really looking forward to the follow up sessions.
Legal status: Sarquella Torres SCP
Team name: Carrer Canal 25, 1-1, 17820 Banyoles
Average age of the associates: 37 years old
Has your team, together or separately, already conceived or implemented some projects and/or won any competition? if so, which ones?
We’ve been working together as a studio, Sarquella Torres, for more than 10 years now. We have developed several projects including Bang Nong Saeng Kindergarten (TH), Germans Soler Butchery (ES), Local Social “La Sauleda” (ES), Barcelona Catalonia stands (FR/DE), as well as several retrofit projects for domestic spaces and public spaces. We have also worked consistently in ephemeral and exhibition spaces including: Mosca (ES), INDA Parade 18 (TH), El millor disseny de l’any 2019 and 2021(FAD) (ES) among others. Last, with five more colleagues, we just won a competition to become the curatorial team, for UIA Architecture World Congress to be held in Barcelona in 2026.