Location: Carretera de Pozuelo a Majadahonda, Majadahonda, MADRID.
Owner: Institute of Health Carlos III. Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness
Design: José Enrique Fombella Guillem and Marta Pastor
Date: 2015-2016

The building to be refurbished was built in the sixties and had deteriorated to the point where it could no longer be put to its intended use. The project also includes demolishing blocks no longer fit for use and building an annexe for teaching areas and general campus facilities.

The project addresses the site development including the construction of a pergola to join some of the buildings that will be maintained.

The refurbished space will be linked to the new laboratory building and will be used for administrative purposes, mainly by research and administrative staff, and for campus management offices and meeting rooms and/or classrooms.

Landscaping works around the buildings, both to the south and to the north, will structure the pathways and access roads, replanting greenery and woodland in areas that are currently either neglected or occupied by sheds and obsolete infrastructure that will be removed.

Refurbishment work often presents an underlying problem that is difficult to solve, especially in the case of a building like this that has no architectural value. The aim is to know which parts of the building are to be maintained, which changed and to what extent the work costs more than demolition and new construction.

In addition to changing the use, the indoor space must be made interesting, while designing the exterior to faithfully reflect the current architecture, making it work for the intended use.

The compositional resources used for this building aim to remove the worst-affected parts while restoring others, rather like a surgical operation which endeavours to enhance the whole so that it can continue to be used and look good for many more years.

Exterior finishes will include different kinds of zinc, stainless steel mesh and white concrete to dilute the contrast with existing buildings on the Campus.


Location: Carretera de Pozuelo a Majadahonda, Majadahonda, MADRID.
Owner: Institute of Health Carlos III. Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness
Design: Alberto Pineda, Pinearq Arquitectos.
Construction supervision: José Enrique Fombella Guillem and Marta Pastor
Date: 2015-2016

The National Centre of Microbiology is located on the Institute of Health Carlos III Majadahonda Campus occupying several scattered buildings that are both poorly equipped and poorly organised.

The design brings the facilities together and centralises them in a new building, to be extended at a later date when it will connect functionally with other buildings currently being refurbished.

The complex design brief and technology required for the Centre’s laboratories, the specific biosafety areas, the network of building services and technical areas all make the facilities very special.

Our studio’s task was to address issues arising during construction while being faithful to the spirit of the design. Therefore a special effort was made to deal with details and construction solutions in a logical way, so that they would optimise the use of the spaces planned, make rational use of the services and treat the envelope with care, all within some very tight budget parameters.



Owner: Boadilla del Monte Town Council, Madrid
Design: José Enrique Fombella Guillem and Marta Pastor
Date: 2014-2016

Boadilla del Monte’s Municipal Housing Company decided to launch a public tender for the design and construction supervision of the rehabilitation and expansion of this apartment block. Our team’s design proposal won.

The building is surrounded by extensive outdoor spaces and is located in the old town centre, close to the Infante D. Luis Palace, while being visible from the edge of the town.
The poor condition of the façades and the roofs made it advisable to completely refurbish the building, not only the interior layout but also the façades and volumes.
Planning regulations permitted the addition of a floor at attic level, increasing the number of housing units from the original 8 to 10.
The façade was designed to be finished with a lime-plaster coating on exterior insulation to improve the building’s thermal conditions, the window openings were extended to the ground bringing more light inside, and a pitched zinc roof was added.
The balconies were maintained as outdoor space, extending the openings that lead on to them to make them part of the living rooms.
Sliding, lattice shutters on the edge of the balconies filter incoming light, making them more usable and improving the composition of the façades.
The solar panels were hidden from view under the eaves, where the steeper part of the roof sloped towards the courtyard, and the water storage tanks were placed in the roof space, protected from the weather.


Location: C/ Sinesio Delgado, MADRID.
Owner: Institute of Health Carlos III. Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness
Design: José Enrique Fombella Guillem and Marta Pastor
Date: 2013

The Institute of Health Carlos III Campus houses multidisciplinary research centres in different blocks but lacks a single building that gives the campus a focal point, not only for catering /cafeteria, but also, and more importantly, for the research staff to be able to meet informally.

The area where the building will be located is in the centre of the complex, below the level of the bordering road, and is surrounded by landscaped, tree-filled gardens.

The topography, the shape of the available space, the orientation, the access roads and the proximity of the existing building, all determined and enhanced the architectural design.

The two-storey project is located in a hollow. Each floor connects to the outside, facilitating the use of the building as a whole and communicating indoor spaces with the pleasant outside area.

The building’s orientation makes the best use of light and both the cafeteria and restaurant enjoy pleasant views. Service areas, the kitchen and their accesses are next to the road in the northern area.

A semi-covered area outside has an etched glass canopy on a lightweight steel structure and will serve as a buffer between inside and out, covering a wide porch that can be used for many months of the year, even for outdoor eating.

The exterior white concrete and sheet metal finishes are consistent with the clean and neutral characteristics of the Campus, while the interiors will provide the warmth and comfort that the use requires, focusing on functionality and minimum maintenance in the service areas.


Location: Calle Arascues, (MADRID).
Design: José Enrique Fombella Guillem
Construction supervision: José Enrique Fombella Guillem
Date: 2011-2013

Instead of traditional houses built in rows, this small block of three flats on three floors plus a rooftop apartment was built on a plot once occupied by a large family house in Madrid’s leafy suburbs.

The trees (Pinus halepensis) and natural lie of the land were retained while the building differs from the surrounding standard, peri-urban, single-family detached homes.

Common and private uses are combined in one building, each flat having its own outdoor and indoor spaces providing privacy under each user’s control.

Each flat is articulated on different levels, with a complex design that facilitates access to all the spaces available, including gardens for communal and private use, a swimming pool, terraces, a drive and parking facilities.

An attractive exterior emerged, whose geometry, rather than materials or techniques, are reminiscent of the Parisian works of Mallet-Stevens or Le Corbusier.


Location: C/. Sinesio Delgado, MADRID.
Owner: Institute of Health Carlos III. Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness.
Design: José Enrique Fombella Guillem
Construction supervision: José Enrique Fombella Guillem and Marta Pastor
Date: 2013-2015

The purpose of the project was to upgrade a garden area to be used by different units of the research campus and design a properly structured parking area.

The proposal seeks to address the irregular topography of the campus and adapt to the heterogeneous built environment – comprising a variety of different buildings -, to provide a point of union and a space where employees can enjoy the open air.

The garden’s organic geometry offers a choice of paths, making the park seem bigger than it is. In addition, the various points where the paths widen provide areas to stop and rest.

The park is easily reached from several different points. These are not marked in any special way except where there is a building, making use of the orthogonal geometry of the construction to create a more architecturally configured access. A staircase provides the main access between stacked gabions and the metal lattice covering the outside staircase of an existing building. Between these two vertical planes, this built access contrasts with the softness of the natural forms of the park.

The white concrete paths are bright in contrast to the shadows of the gardens and the park as a whole is stimulating for the senses. Located in a hollow, the topography makes users feel wrapped in the green slopes, covered in aromatic plants and fruit trees which create a pleasant natural atmosphere.

PUBLIC SCHOOL, en Alarcón, Cuenca

imagen-principalLocation: Alarcón, Cuenca
Owner: Castile-La Mancha Regional Government, Department of Education and Science in Cuenca.
Design: José Enrique Fombella Guillem
Construction supervision: José Enrique Fombella Guillem
Date: 2009-2010

This small school, built on a tiny plot in the centre of a village replete with valuable heritage, was subject to the constraints of strict, and not always very wise, planning regulations applied to composition, materials and façade.

Two very different types of façade, in terms of both materials and structure, clearly differentiate two sides of the building. The façade facing the street adapts to planning constraints with plain stone walls, small windows and doors and a tiled roof, while the interior façade, almost invisible from the street, caters more freely to the functional and lighting requirements, with an almost rationalist composition.

While the foundations were being dug, the remains of a 4th-century lintel were found and by popular decision were placed over the entrance to the school and together with an indigo-painted pillar serve to announce the change from one type of façade to another.


imagen-principalLocation: PLOT 18.1.2 ENSANCHE SUR SECTION OF ALCORCÓN (MADRID).
Owner: Alcorcón Municipal Land Company (EMGIASA). Alcorcón Town Council, Madrid
Design: José Enrique Fombella Guillem and Francisco Javier Morla Juaristi
Construction supervision: José Enrique Fombella Guillem and Francisco Javier Morla Juaristi
Date: 2007-2009

The Council launched a tender, through its municipal housing company, in an ambitious social building programme as part of the new urban development in the south of Alcorcón. Teams of architects were invited to propose a design for the social housing blocks with Official Protection, as a result of which our team was awarded two contracts. Other contracts were awarded to different architectural practices, thus guaranteeing not only variety in the designs but also a fair share among the best designs presented.
The urban layout was very open, generating a wide variety of architectural approaches, always maintaining high standards of energy efficiency, economy and rationality in terms of typology and construction, which helped to successfully complete an urban development in a very short time. The development has since been acknowledged as a pioneer in bioclimatic design and architectural quality in Madrid.
Two parallel blocks were designed, each 6 storeys high (ground floor + 5), on streets running from north to south. The floor area required was achieved with maximum efficiency, in a minimum volume, leaving space for a large, central, airy and very sunny courtyard for all to use, which improved the bioclimatic conditions of the buildings with the presence of plants and trees.
The focus was on austerity when planning the composition and resources, in order to generate a rational and efficient solution with the minimum components, while producing an eloquent building.
There are two flats and a vertical communication core on each floor, which makes the typologies very spatially economic, allows the rooms to be well oriented and generates cross-ventilation.
Below the ground level are one and a half basement levels of parking space, common space and centralised building services so that energy use can be combined and economically managed in each block.
In this design we used a system of self-supporting brick façade, separated from the structure of the building, which proved to be both very energy efficient and significantly more economical than a conventional façade.


imagen-principalLocation: C/ Pocillo, El Cañavate, Cuenca
Owner: Castile-La Mancha Regional Government, Department of Education and Science in Cuenca.
Design: José Enrique Fombella Guillem
Construction supervision: José Enrique Fombella Guillem
Date: 2009-2010

School facilities are very important in scarcely populated areas where the right to education must be made available to children living in villages.

In spite of limited resources, the design managed to address the issue of a multi-use building that not only provides space for teaching but also for use outside school hours as a cultural centre, adult activity centre and, in general, a multi-purpose meeting space.

The featureless surroundings and the location of the plot called for a strong presence, in terms of appearance, which at the same time should be strictly functional and austere in compliance with the design brief and the funds available.

A long, single-storey, east-west-facing building was designed and built, where each juxtaposed space was characterised not only by shape and volume but also by the material used, resembling the surrounding villages with a multitude of architectural typologies.

The shape of the plot and exterior constraints did the rest, which gave rise to a design that was varied in form and materials and rich in indoor and outdoor spaces.



Owner: Ayuntamiento de Móstoles, Madrid
Design: José Enrique Fombella Guillem
Construction supervision: José Enrique Fombella Guillem
Date: 2007-2008

Móstoles town council and the Madrid regional government decided to launch a competition, open to architects and artists, to design and erect a monument commemorating the bicentenary of the popular uprising of 1808, which our team won.

Previous experience in the area over the years had enabled us to get to know the location and its value, and appreciate the atmosphere surrounding this event that has affected the town for two hundred years.

While being unlike the work usually undertaken by an architectural studio, the challenge was still within our scope since the symbolic content and form were not dissimilar from those of a building. The sculpture did not have a functional use, but it was an emotionally charged landmark.

Each and every one of the components designed and constructed has a meaning as part of the whole, which at times is explicit but is often less obvious, making the monument somewhat enigmatic.

The surrounding urban environment was also developed, not only to enhance the general landscape but also to address the complicated topographical challenges of the land on which the monument stands.

The sculpture was erected in record time using highly sophisticated technical resources and on a limited budget.