Have a look at this unusual Waste Treatment Facility designed by Enric Batlle Durany and Joan Roig Duran of Batlle & Roig Architects.
The treatment facility - refered to as 'CTRV' in Spanish - is set to cover an area of 45,000 square metres, and will be located on a hillside overlooking the Coll Cardús massif in the municipality of Vacarisses, Barcelona, in the district of the Vallès Occidental.
This site is currently taken up by a controlled waste landfill site which is nearing its capacity limit; causing the managing body to consider regulating the closure of the facility and to study possible future uses for the area.
The choice of the location of the CTRV has also taken into account the different criteria of logistical and economic suitability, as well as the minimisation of the environmental impact resulting from the installation and operation of waste management-related activities.
The activity of the landfill site has led to unfriendly topographical alterations and modifications in the natural environment, so Batlle & Roig decided to establish the facilities in those areas where the activity of the landfill had already damaged the natural environment.
Despite the size of the plant facilities, it's intended that the project will achieve the highest landscape integration possible with the surrounding environment, and to achieve this, the architectural team pursued a high topographical adaptation, where the impact from the roofs and facades is minimised by the subsequent landscape restoration.
Admirably, the building uses water and energy generated by the plant itself. The water comes mostly from the collection of rainwater and the energy needed is obtained from the biogas generated by the waste materials found at the neighbouring Coll Cardús landfill site.
The project involves the construction of two large treatment areas under a large roof. These areas, separated by a driveway, are different in height and sit at different levels; which is the reason why the roof changes its geometry according to the programs and dimensions of each precinct.
The roof will cover a variety of requirements: forced air vents, skylights, and so on, blended together through the use of a graphic structure that can be transformed into a landscape roof. The different circles contain earth, gravel, native groundcovers and shrubs.
Over time, it's hoped that these will balance the impact of the facility without resorting to camouflage or mimicry.
Photography Francisco Urrutia.