Location16708 Pozoamargo, Cuenca, Spain
Quantity SurveyorEugenio Ros Tendero
CollaboratorsJin Xue, Jesús Gómez Bago, Fernando Gómez Arroyo, Manuel Bedoya Arboleda
Text description provided by the architects. Situated in Pozoamargo, in the heart of “Manchuela conquense”, the new bakery designed by the architect Isabel Escudero Herrera recovers the popular architecture of the county with a contemporary language and becomes a neuralgic point for the village. The project was designed taking into account its relation with the surrounding, space rhythms, sense of unity and, above all, its functional and constructive character. With this aim the external presence of the bakery doesn’t show the luminous amplitude of its internal space. The space sensations are therefore based more on the subtlety of alterations and on the complexity of its relations than on the abundance of means.
The need for a new bakery came as a result of a fire in the old wood fire oven. Without doubt to build a new space, one had to take into consideration the old architectural forms of the Manchuela.
The first aim was, therefore, to close the large block of “la cerca” –property where the plot is placed– raising a wall that matches the alignment. The bakery should be placed in the most respectful possible way given the fact that it is a tertiary building in a residential area. The oven and the sales area would be housed in a volume and the store and service areas in another, in the form of the traditional houses of farming, and both volumes, though separated, form a visual whole.
In order not to deviate from the typical structures of the place, a pitched roof was constructed over the main volume, whilst the service block consists of a monopitched roof and is attached to the northeast wall as a memory to constructions and farmyards of the area.
On top of the bakery roof raises the great chimney, unique element that reminds us of the industrial nature of the building, which features the structure although can only be seen from the side of the building or from afar. In the interior, the chimney becomes a “light well” over the wood fire oven.
The whole building is white and joinery is sky blue, as always. The characteristic grey skirting board disappears and converts into a shade that “hides” the air chamber that avoids the fearsome humidity of soil, whilst the grey tone of the floor reminds us of the cement floors of agricultural constructions.
The main building is lightly raised from the soil, “floats”, is separated from the alignment to deploy the necessary access ramp to the sales area leaving an entrance court that provides adequate ventilation and illumination as well as a place to enjoy the shade of trees. In this court, a sheet of water commemorates cisterns and wells of the zone.
In order to cover the entrance, a porch that reaches the front wall is added thus sheltering the display window as well as a floating bench that runs along the interior of the sales area and that eases the wait for a turn or allows you to take a coffee in a conducive atmosphere.
The façade openings are small, as in years past, and, although they look randomly displayed on the exterior, they are strategically positioned allowing a distant line of sight from the interior: windows are always an escape viewing point whilst working. The characteristic window size is 50x50cm, excepting those on the northwest wall which are 30x30cm, since they face the owner’s house, and the three windows of the sales area which have bigger dimensions hence it is a public space. The big horizontal window on the corner of the above allows visibility to the access entrance from the counter as well as integrates the access courts to the sales area.
The memory of tradition with a contemporary language –changes of direction, levels, spaces, points of sights, thresholds, shades, colours, etc.– enriches the experience of purchasing bread in this small village of Cuenca.