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Youth Center In Spain Gets The Modern Hangout Right

Catering to a wide range of activities, this new park is a blend of both considered and dynamic design.

Dave Pinter
Dave Pinter on July 7, 2011. @DavePinter

It isn’t often we see architectural projects developed to cater to teens which don’t involve shopping.  So it is quite refreshing to see what architects Selgas Cano created for the Government of Extremadura’s Factory Youth Movement Program. Located in southeastern Spain in the town of Merida, a new park and structure recently opened which will serve as a recreation and activity center primarily for the youth but everyone is welcome. The facility aims to cater to a diverse range of interests and the architects integrated a host of amenities. There’s a skatepark, concert and street theatre stage,  graffiti and urban art wall, climbing wall and tightrope walking, and classes including video art and electronic music, acrobatics, performing arts, manga, parkour, traditional and contemporary dance.

The design for the structure had to work within a modest budget and solve some challenges. There wasn’t going to be any air conditioning for the buildings so the architects devised a meter thick thermal canopy which shields the site from the sun and rain. Not only does it serve an important functional purpose, but the bright orange canopy is visually eye catching. Most of the structures on the site are built with metal frames clad with low cost polycarbonate sheeting. The tough translucent material lets in daylight reducing the amount of lighting needed inside while transmitting the interior lighting at night to the outside giving the structure a glowing appearance.

[via Arch Daily]

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