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Catalan Institute of Economists hq.

Catalan Institute of Economists hq.

Project Description

Vertical Square | We call this building the Vertical Square.
The façade of the Institute of Economists is a vertical square with the foyers of each floor superimposed.
Just as in the galleries of the Barcelona Eixample, this large south-facing window, where people walk, meet and converse is its social heart.
The vertical square is a place to socialize, to watch and to be seen.
The new Institute of Economists headquarters has the capacity to become the city.

Communicability | The foyer, waiting room and circulation areas on the different levels are placed along the front façade, looking at the square. Movement, people waiting and changes in the interior space are the real face of the urban piece. With this operation and with the transparency of the glass façade, the visibility of the institution increases, establishing a dialogue between the square and the city. Moreover, these spaces of the foyer act as a climate and acoustic pad, protecting the professional training spaces. At night, the Institute informs the urban environment activating its operational dynamics through selective illumination of the different programmatic zones.

Social Heart | The program of 3,000 m2 total is distributed over 6 main floors and 2 basement floors. By grouping the functions in a double order, the building floors appear as sequence of superimposed boxes. The functions are divided into a classroom/diffusion area and a deanery/administrative area. The program in its entirety is organized into rooms: the classrooms are rooms, the waiting halls are rooms, as does the stairway…
These rooms, or boxes, are defined through 3 different materials: glass, aluminum and wood. Because of its use, the classrooms are white and monochrome. Wood is used in the rooms with natural lighting to enhance their social use. That principle is applied in the access corridors to the classrooms, visible on the main building façade, and in the stairways which form the SOCIAL HEART of the building.

45% Energy Savings:

+ 4 facades with natural light: double crossed ventilation
+ North-facing classrooms + South-facing vestibules: thermal cushion
+ South-facing ventilated double glass skin.
+ Efficiency in climate control system
Reductions with respect to standard usage:
– Emissions CO2 28%
– heating consumption 60%
– cooling consumption 30%
– lighting consumption 20%


Catalan Institute of Economists hq.

  • Barcelona
  • Spain
Completion: 2013
Used materials
  • Metal
  • Glass
  • Facade cladding

Type of Building

Architect Office