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Madrid’s ‘Distrito C’ Self Shading Solar Office
Distrito C is an ambitious project designed to consolidate 40,000 employees in Madrid from Spain’s largest company, Telefonica. The complex includes four phases of three buildings each, for a total of twelve structures. The design and materials for the buildings are identical so as to streamline the construction process and keep time and material waste to a minimum. And by keeping construction and production as simple as possible, Telefonica maintains the clean, unified look the company is after.
Local architect Rafael de La-Hoz designed Distrito C with the hot Spanish sun in mind. A special type of glass, designed specifically for this project, has been installed throughout as a means of reflecting the sun’s heat. Protruding panels act as sun visors and give the buildings a unique aesthetic character. Connecting each of the four phases is a covered walkway that shades people below. On top of the walkway is the world’s largest rooftop photovoltaic installation–15,300 solar panels capable of collecting 4 million kW hours annually.
Landscaping around the complex includes native plants that require very little water; the water that is needed comes from rainwater harvesting systems on top of each building. Since opening its Distrito C headquarters in 2007, Telefonica has been able to streamline and simplify its operating techniques and reduce local travel expenses.
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