Madrid's 2010 Shanghai Pavilion - a glazed sustainable housing solution wrapped in bamboo louvers - is about to undergo a sustainable upgrade with a new facade of Corten steel umbrellas. The building was designed by Foreign Office Architects and eventually converted into a commercial office and retail complex, although it is showing signs of rust and its bamboo elements have completely rotted out. So the municipality commissioned 3Gatti Architecture Studio to design a striking new shading system - read on for a closer look!
3Gatti’s Francesco Gatti was inspired by the hot summer months in Shanghai, when just about everyone carries colorful parasols. He decided to spin this common shading system in a way that would be compatible with the pavilion’s existing infrastructure. Like the bamboo louvers that were previously wrapped around a 1.5 meter wide terrace, the umbrellas can be adjusted to provide light as needed.
The retractable mechanical parts will be made of steel, while the parasols and the intermediate panels will be made of a very thin weathered Corten steel that will hopefully last a bit longer than the bamboo. When the umbrellas are open the building with be flushed with daylight and well-ventilated, and when the umbrellas are completely shut they will block excess solar gain.