- Structural Calculation: Manuel Arguijo y Asociados SL
- Installations: AIA Instal·lacions Arquitectòniques
- Budget: Qestudi
- Energy Efficiency: Dekra
- Landscape: ManelColominas
- Direction Of Execution: Viading
- Construction: UTE Vil·la Urània. Dragados + Sorigué
- Promotor: BIMsa Barcelona Infraestructures Municipals SA
- Architects Authors Of The Work: Marc Camallonga, Jordi Pagès, Pasqual Bendicho, Yolanda Olmo
- City: Barcelona
- Country: Spain
Text description provided by the architects. Vil·la Urània is a small residence of the late nineteenth century that was home to the renowned astronomer Josep Comas i Solà, in the district of Sarrià-Sant Gervasi in Barcelona. The re-densification of the neighbourhood left the building and the small surrounding garden encased between two large dividing walls. The new complex of facilities assumes the challenge of giving a new life to the existing building and gardens by incorporating them into a new building with low environmental impact and reduced energy consumption. The new equipment, with more than 3200m2, stands out for the use of intermediate spaces, naturally heated, closed by a large facade formed by several overlapping filters that adapt to the external conditions, providing a vegetal facade that accompanies the users in all their activities.
Villa's pre-existence fixes the ground level and the first floor of the whole complex. A dual access communicates the plot streets. An adapted ramp path and an external staircase resolves the vertical communications. The lightness of outdoor staircase increases the ventilation and resolves a soft connection with the neighbours that look over the building. The villa becomes the hub of the complex.
The extension is conceived as a tall and narrow building, oriented to Southeast with a large gallery, a semi- detached greenhouse, a passive system to warm and refresh the meeting areas and informal activities as well as the circulation of the building. This intermediate space works as a winter greenhouse and as a shaded house in summer, and acts as a thermal mattress by separating the heated areas from the outside, reducing the energy demand of the building. The facade adapts automatically to outdoor conditions. Indoor temperature sensors act on the glass facade, opening it completely when necessary. Outside sensors measure solar radiation by acting on the folding shutters in summer. The inner plantation formed by different species provides a pleasant sensation of freshness in summer, while in winter reduces its volume to allow to capture the solar radiation. The building envelope has been designed to achieve low thermal transmittance, minimize thermal bridges and a high level of tightness.
The building stands out by the intense use of materials with low environmental impact, recycled origin and quickly renewable. Wooden structures and wooden carpentry, wood-aluminium curtain walls or hemp fibre isolation panels.
Vil.la Urània has been designed as a Nearly zero-energy building (nZEB). Its energy consumption is very low and part of the required energy is generated at the own building. High efficient active systems have been chosen. Geothermal heat pump with 11 wells 100m deep provides heating and cooling acclimatization and hot water production. The lighting is LED and it has photovoltaic production with 19kWpic installed. 20.000 litres buried tank collects rainwater to be used on the irrigation systems over the plantation all over the facade.
The building has achieved Class A energy certification and LEED Platinum certification.