Pino Montano Community and Social Services Centre (Seville)
Programme: Community and Social Services Centre
Date of competition: 2010
Category: Community and Social Services
Area: 1,400 m2
Developer: Empresa Municipal de la Vivienda de Sevilla (EMVISESA - Seville Municipal Social Housing Company)
Collaborators: F. Orizia, A. Babío
Seville Town Hall launched an architectural competition in 2010 to design a community and social services centre in the Pino Montano suburb of Seville. The location of plot itself was in a virtual no man's land in a suburban area for which future development is as yet undecided.
When taking part MEDIOMUNDO arquitectos proposed a free standing building set back from the road to create a space of transition with the urban/suburban surroundings. We designed the building to be hermetic while incorporating openings that both look out onto the outside world and invite viewers to enter. Inside, the entrance and the staircase differentiate the common areas (auditorium and multipurpose area) and the offices for social services. The project highlights the importance of the common areas being clearly defined, while the multifunctional areas and offices are flexible and interchangeable.
At MEDIOMUNDO arquitectos we believe that all community centres are more than simple buildings. They are processes in which to express new forms of neighbourliness with people and nearby spaces, as well as with geographically and culturally distant others. Integral sustainability in architecture is a constructive, economic and social objective. The following text about neighbourhood by Okwui Enwezor, curator of the II Bienal Internacional de Arte Contemporáneo in Seville, is entitled The Unhomely and synthesises the singularity of this project:
"It takes up the shape of neighbourliness as a form of intimate and proximate relationship that is illuminated by the demands on neighbours of diverse social, political, economic, ethnic, racial, religious, and gendered communities. Neighbourliness is neither coercive nor antagonistic, even though it is now constantly threatened. One does not so much watch over or look after a neighbour, one watches a neighbour with an entirely new set of lenses. Yet the root sense of neighbourliness is that it is an expression of recognition, hospitality, friendship, solidarity. It is neither indifferent nor alienated from difference. Its principal domain is the intimate and proximate. It permits, organizes and makes possible a space of free exchange, debate, contestation, experiment, innovation, lively discourse at the level of collective sovereignty".