West 8 to Design Madrid's Central Park

John Hill
16. 六月 2022
Visualization © West 8

The selection was announced on June 13 at a ceremony chaired by Madrid Mayor José Luis Martínez-Almeida, with the proposal by West 8 selected unanimously by the jury. Forty teams were invited to participate in the competition, with 14 of them submitting proposals and five teams (West 8, BIG, James Corner Field Operations, Grant Associates, and Rubio Arquitectura) advancing to the final stage. West 8 is working with Porras Guadiana Arquitectos as a local partner, and following the selection they will develop the design of the public space that they contend "will become a new icon for the city of Madrid."
 

Visualization © West 8

Their client on the 14.5-hectare project is Comisión Gestora APR 05.31 “Centro de Negocios Chamartin,” which will build a platform over the tracks leading into and out of the existing Chamartín Station. In turn, West 8’s design, per an announcement of the competition win, "incorporates the layout of the decades-existing train tracks to propose a series of flowing lines which run longitudinally through the park." By bridging the tracks, the park will connect long-separated neighborhoods east and west of the station.
 

Visualization © West 8

According to the announcement, the winning design focuses on three main strategies:

  • "A vibrant and activated park for all the day," with an "open and flexible design" for a variety of uses and "ambiences," a perimeter meant to activate the ground floors of surrounding buildings, and the integration of "kiosks, restaurant terraces, pavilions, food truck and sports areas" inside the park.
  • "A welcoming and environmentally conscious park," with a rain garden, large lawn, and meadow meant to "to encourage visitors to connect with nature."
  • "An innovative and interactive digital space," including a network of light and sound environments that will change throughout the year.
Visualization © West 8
Visualization © West 8

The park's "iconic" feature will be el Jardín del Viento (Garden of Wind), which West 8's Adriaan Geuze described as a "large vertical garden [that] will rise above the height of the treetops to capture the high breezes and direct them through its green envelope, reducing the ambient temperature and creating a cool space inside that it will become the main meeting point of the park." This vertical garden can be seen in the nighttime rendering near the top, through the trees in the rendering above, and in the immersive rendering below, where it is depicted as a venue for performances.
 

Visualization © West 8

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