Architects: Hampton+Rivoira+Arquitectos Location: Escobar, Provincia of Buenos Aires, Argentina Architects In Charge: Jorge Hampton, Emilio Rivoira Associated Architect: Cristian Carnicer Design Team: Roberto Lombardi, María Eugenia García Castera, María Eugenia Viña Raznovich, Juan Reartes, Ignacio Ruiz Orrico, Diego Tablada, Emilia Alvarado, Anahi Fedrizzi Project Year: 2009 Photographs: Jorge Hampton, Emilio Rivoira, Fernando Mayán, Fundación Temaikén
One of the challenges was to have a good technology for a very specific demand.
The demand of covering almost one hectare of the birds’ habitat with a net and a system of bearing arches, placed the architects in the difficult task of finding a system of tension and charge transfer from light industrial elements with complex geometries. Given this situation, it was present a tension between the reason and the intuition.
Each specie, over 250, occupies its own spatial layer from water level. Based on these features that were defined the different dimensions of cages, their connectivities, relations between service areas and public areas and the setting of ecosystems. The route of the inner pathways of the aviaries sum approximately 4500 meters.
The Great Aviary is the largest structure visible from the access routes. It also has double arches in the central part of 12 meters high and 30 meters of structural light. Also, it has low arches generating three areas of 900 m2 each. The enclosure is a stainless steel mesh of 25 mm2. This whole area is built on a slope towards the central lake. Thus, the paths of the visitors ascend and descend according to topography and limited visual within the different environments, however these are open to the lake.
In the aviaries you can find viewing platforms, aquatic areas, bridges, waterfalls “bridal veil” and even an area of libation of hummingbirds. The birds transition between the cages is made with a wooden cylinder and double chain curtains to prevent the intercontinental tourism of birds.
“We have learned a lesson here. The design and construction, by its technological and programmatic demand, are long, intricate, and subject to trial and error. This is how this dynamic process was, always with empathy between specialists and makers.”