Interview BaBH San Francisco winner team

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15 June, 2018
BaBH San Francisco winner team

Arquideas interviews Indibil Solans, Daniel Varga, Lara Arín and Lluis Balcells, winner team of our Bay Book House (BaBH) San Francisco international architecture competition.

1.- What made you want to participate in our Bay Book House (BaBH) competition?

The reason to participate for the second time in an Arquideas competition was that it meant an opportunity to work in an international competition of ideas which gave us freedom to project and also invited us to reflect on a proposal without taking account of economical or physical limitations.

The topic appealed to us right from the start because of its originality and location. Projecting a library with no books, given the current circumstances where the use of physical books is declining, was a challenge.

Another key point was that the competition offered a reasonable time to implement both ideas and their representation. You can combine it with other tasks without feeling the stress that comes from the immediacy of response that other competitions require. This is beneficial for both the project and the process.

2.- Briefly explain your proposal that won First Prize.  Would you like it to become a reality?

In a city full of icons, this new space strives for becoming a meeting point and a new cultural and landscape reference point in San Francisco; a flagship for a powerful and enthusiastic waterfront.

Taking the history of the city and the significant role of the bay as a reference, we propose a space of cultural exchange that serves to activate the unused piers of this ancient harbour. This way, piers re-emerge as a state-of-the-art library, incorporating architectural and technological elements.  A proposal where architecture and new technologies go hand in hand.

The project aims for generating a unique space by using the most simple and humble elements. The strategically repetition of elements emphasises the value of public space and connects with the pre-existing urban fabric. These simple elements, the pillars, become part of the appropriate urban furniture of the city.

We believe this proposal would probably fit in more than one socio-demographic space. More likely in the West Coast, especially in San Francisco, somewhere near Silicon Valley, where all new information technologies come from.

3.- What is your opinion on architectural education in Spain?  How could it be improved in relation to the professional field?

We think that architectural education in Spain is complete because the new architects are trained in all necessary aspects: from a technical approach that deals with structures or constructions, to more artistic approaches, such as projecting and drawing. As a result, we are educated to deal with the project as a whole.

We come from the Superior Technical School of Architecture of Reus, a young school with a distinctive feature: projects and urbanism go hand in hand, configuring a single subject. This fact ensures that during our education we work on all aspects of the project. From urbanism to constructive detail, we learn how to come up with constructive and technical solutions for an urban strategy, as it can be checked on our proposal.

We think that one of the aspects to improve would be the acquisition of professional experience during our university period, because, once you finish your degree, it is very difficult and risky to face a project with nothing else than theoretical knowledge. In this sense, we believe that competitions could serve as a tool that brings closer both the educational and professional field.

4.- How are you going to approach your future careers?

We don’t know if we will face our future careers together, but we are bonded by some values to which we together try to respond. 

Beyond individualism, we consider that our profession implies a collective and multidisciplinary work. In a world that is more interconnected than ever, we believe in team work. We believe in the combination of all individual forces that unify in a team by developing a rewarding dialogue and an exchange of ideas.  

As long as we can, we will live experiences together. We share not only work time but illusion and creativity.

5.- And finally, tell us about your experience with Arquideas.

We faced a competition with a format that places us halfway between university and professionalism. We had to improve our graphics and composition techniques. But especially, we’ve been forced to synthesize and express ourselves differently to when we defend our project at the school. Moreover, this project allowed us to work full-scale because it comprehends the whole waterfront. But at the same time, it forced us to work on a public space from a human scale, bearing in mind the impact of each perspective.

Apart from the whole technical experience, it proved to be a rewarding personal experience because it allowed us to identify the skills that every member possessed in order to optimize the resources we had and that lead us to improve as a team.

This enrichment didn’t end at the date of delivery because we understand that being part of the jury will propose us to perform a different exercise that we haven’t experienced yet. An exercise that invite us to think about the next topic from the perspective of the receiver. This will mean a responsibility that we understand it can only be faced from the respect for the work of our future colleagues.

Finally, we would like to thank the Arquideas platform for promoting competitions like this one and also the jury for the time and words dedicated to our work.

Comments

Acacia789h

Interview with winning team with a lot of useful information and quite interesting.
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