Centro Canalejas Madrid (Spain) is one of the most significant urban development projects undertaken in Europe in recent times. It encompasses the restoration of seven historic buildings, two of them from the end of the nineteenth century, which were merged as a result of the different bank mergers and that were in disuse for 15 years.
The geometry that serves as the basis for the overall development of the project is a classical, radial geometry with an axis of symmetry in the bisector that shapes the building on street Alcalá 14 and that extends to the rest of the buildings.
Estudio Lamela has designed a complex of 50,000 m2 with different uses: a Grand Hotel of 200 rooms, a shopping arcade of 15,000 m2, 22 luxury apartments and an underground parking garage for 400 spaces.
The criterion that has guided the redevelopment has been the custody, protection and restoration of all the elements and spaces of value or of historical or artistic uniqueness of the original buildings.
All the facades and part of the original structure have been preserved, as well as various elements of the interior: skylights, locksmithery, wooden carpentry, as well as unique elements such as chimneys, and even a vault room. All this has been relocated inside the building in its final state.
A development of this magnitude is rarely presented in the history of a city and it has to be broadly designed. It not only affects the seven unique buildings, but also their entire surroundings, from an urban, economic and social point of view. It impacts urban traffic, the design of the perimeter routes, public transport, the adjoining facades; that is, the lives of all the citizens. This reflection has been present in every one of the architectural decisions.