OPPORTUNITY: LEARNING FROM MARBELLA
In the Spanish coast, 80% of the architecture rarely dialogues with the context: it just imposes on top of it. As a result, the most beautiful, closest spots to the sea area overbuilt, destroyed by static constructions that are often abandoned, leaving sites that can´t be used neither recovered. This team saw an opportunity in those bad practices from the past to create another type of construction that dialogues, that reacts to the environment creating dynamic relations that change and adapt throughout time. This architecture had to be able to be transported from one site to another, leaving the landscape unaltered. To enable this soft contact with the context it had to be energetically autonomous, independent from electricity, sewage or water grids. Also, we thought that this architecture had to provide amazing experiences: be located as close to the water as possible, or even in it. The target user would be the adventure seeker, the surfers that want to practice for a short period of time and then discover somewhere else.
CREATING A DYNAMIC LANDSCAPE THAT REACTS TO HUMAN OCUPPATION
Surftopia is born from the observation of human activity at the beaches. This temporary colonization is often determined by the use of umbrellas that deploy, acting as occupancy indicators. The proposal dialogues with the environment through a series of reactive masts that open and close like umbrellas depending on the amount of surfers using the beach. When closed they conform a field of vertical lines, that doesn´t obstruct the views and allows the use of the space in between them. However, when rented they deploy to accommodate a fully equipped living unit.
THE OBJECT DEFINITION: ARCHITECTURE THAT REACTS TO A DYNAMIC LANDSCAPE
These living units are elevated on top of four structural legs to protect from the water level changes. These elements also integrate a stair to access the unit, they provide storage space for the surfing equipment, a shower, and the tanks to store the waste material coming from above. The upper mast hosts all the furniture that deploys once the unit opens. Lunch area, kitchen, bathroom, are articulated as a continuous space protected from the exterior through a translucent skin. At some parts this fabric becomes transparent to allow views of the exceptional location: the stars in the sky when lying in bed or the sea sunset while having a drink with friends.
The mast includes a series of devices to obtain energy. At the top of the mast there is a “cap” that collects rainwater, to be reused for the shower and toilet. Secondly it also integrates a wind turbine to generate electricity. Besides, this “cap” is connected to an air extractor so that the hot air from the inside is extracted naturally using the power of the wind. Furthermore, the outer fabric skin collects solar energy using small solar cells. Their distribution and density react to the path of the sun.