Rehabilitation in “El Prat”
On the right of the rectified course of the Llobregat, protected by La Ricarda lagoon, the seafront has been conserved entirely and is now a natural protected area housing certain species of birds. The flat, bright beach still plays host to the ruins of two former military buildings. One of them is the former barracks; only a series of intermingled walls remain with large openings linking each area. The other is a small, uninspiring neoclassical villa the roof of which has gone but which still preserves its overhangs, frames and façades. It is a building of a movingly puerile nature. We were entrusted with rebuilding these ruins for a bird observatory. The link between the ruins and the beach settings was so ideal that it seemed improper to alter this and we understood that it was best to understand the programme handed to us in the minimal sense. The first of the ruins was merely consolidated. The romantic villa was also simply strengthened preserving the fallen stone blocks in the same place and allowing a fig tree that had sprouted on the roofless areas to grow. The need to access the upper floor in order to spot the birds and compliance with accessibility regulations gave us grounds to create a counterpoint for the ruins. The new ramp unfolds endlessly forming a promenade crossing the building so it can be seen from all perspectives.