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cover Barcelona

Sandra Hofmeister, Heide Wessely (eds.)
Urban Architecture and Community Since 2010
328 pages, with numerous photos and illustrations
25.0 x 19.5 cm, flexcover
ISBN 978-3-95553-607-7. English
€ 59.90. Also available as e-book
June 2023. Edition DETAIL, Munich

New from DETAIL:

Heide Wessely, Sandra Hofmeister (eds.)


Urban Architecture and Community Since 2010


Barcelona is superficially just a metropolis on the shores of the Mediterranean and a popular destination for tourists and anyone interested in architecture. At closer inspection, however, this is a vibrant hotbed of forward-looking architecture and urban planning. The Catalan metropolis is home to more bold concepts for climate adaptation and urban coexistence than almost anywhere else in Europe.

The urban portrait Barcelona. Urban Architecture and Community Since 2010 presents a selection of thirty structures that have been built since 2010, bringing readers on a guided tour of surprising residential buildings, intriguing cultural institutions, and extraordinary community spaces. Among the architectural bureaus represented in the title are the Mies van der Rohe-awarded Lacol, which has made a name for itself internationally through its designs focussing on socially acceptable housing projects. Their cooperative schemes are prime examples for affordable and sustainable housing in an urban context. Besides considerate additions to existing buildings and densification projects, the ongoing maintenance and upkeep of Barcelona’s built environment has led to ever increasing levels of everyday and social qualities. Another example is the renovation and repurposing by Harchitectes of the former glass manufacturing plant Cristalleries Planell into a new civic centre which was undertaken employing an ingenious low-tech concept for cooling the building. These, along with some other projects of the Catalan bureau, are just some of the buildings acknowledged in the book.

The projects, including many additions to existing buildings, are documented with photos, floor plans and texts. Supplementary interviews introduce readers to key players in Barcelona’s architectural scene and their personal takes on the city. Essays shed light on little-known aspects on the backgrounds regarding the city’s urban development and transport planning and provide for glimpses behind the scenes. Among the plans that are regarded with a more in-depth analysis are the mobility projects of the Superblocks, with which the municipality aims to reduce noise and exhaust pollution caused by cars in residential quarters while at the same time creating new public spaces for the residents.

In the series of urban portraits by Edition DETAIL both Copenhagen and Berlin have already previously been published.



© Milena Villalba
© lvaro Valdecantos
© Adria Goula



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