The former garage situated between the two main train stations in Madrid fell into disrepair and was basically untouched since the 1940′s. Officials of The Hub and ch + qs architects saw that it was still intact and was uniquely located in the heart of the city. Rather than completely upgrade, refinish and remodel, the team decided to leave it largely the way it was – paint still peeling from the walls, scrapes and scratches, and a large beautiful skylight in the ceiling in order to let the patina from years of use show through.
However, they did upgrade the space enough to make it energy efficient, offer economic sustainability and they instituted recycling programs. A radiant floor heating and cooling system was installed underneath wood floors to keep the space warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Daylighting from the skylight provides most of the daytime lighting in the large room. Furniture was donated by Hub members or found second hand, which lends an eclectic, yet homey feel, and old wooden fruit crates became shelving, stools, tables and more.
A large central room serves as the main collaboration and work space, while side rooms lined with recycled wool felt serve as private meeting, media and work rooms. Even more than providing shared workspace though, the Hub has become a gathering space for cultural and social activities for the neighborhood, making it a truly multi-functional space.
Images ©Daniel Torrello/ch + qs architects
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