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image Project: Universidad de Salamanca

Universidad de Salamanca

Introduction : Team : School : Narratives : Costs : Images


Architect Narrative


The Master Plan of the brand new Campus of this University — founded in 1218 — gives spatial shape to a challenge of a modern educational idea designed under principles of social interaction, commitment to Nature and environment, and human scale.

Principles about Learning

-Personalized Learning: -“Educational Campus”: an innovative space for the 21st CenturyHuman scale: Agora, plaza, cloister-Adaptation to the Bologna 2010 parameters (25 students/teacher)-it will be the first Campus adapted from its early design to the new European Higher Education system

-Social interaction-Interaction University-social context of the City of Villamayor-Open Campus-Botanical Park, Garden of Arts and Virtual Reality Pavilion, to be experimented by all citizens and visitors

-Real-World-Agronomic experimental area, to be useful as an environment and a subject for study and research-The Scientific Park as a locomotive for economic local growth

Principles about Process & Community

-Community involvement: -Campus: conceived to foster the participation of all kind of members of the academical and urban community-Master Plan: the result of 6 months of intense participation of members of the academical and urban community: University, Municipality, Regional Government, Foundations, Companies and students

-Accommodate Change:-Flexible Campus: architectural typologies capable of internal and external accommodation to future changes; open spaces for Campus growth; buildings conceived to be accommodated individually by users

-Fosters Health and Security:-Campus designed to be safe from river flooding-River, Nature and indigenous vegetation as an active cultural-learning component which creates a healthy environment for the University life

Principles about Resources, Context & Space

-Three systems of Ecology:-Campus conceived as a sustainable structure, designed using principles of bioclimatism, orientation and ecology values-Architectural ecology: buildings pre-designed to be sustainable , using technologies to save energy

-High Performance, Sustainability:-Botanical Park along riverside: indigenous vegetation, sustainable, low maintenance, educational-Tormes river water to be recycled for Campus use-Villamayor traditional sandstone: sustainable through centuries of usage in local Architecture, combined with granite

-Technology & the Global Connection:-Campus conceived to promote the use of modern technologies for education and communication: Media-Lab, Scientific Park

Educator Narrative


As a university campus, the organizational and architectural interpretation proposed by our campus planner for a space as particular as the one situated near the town of Villamayor, on the banks of the river Tormes, and not far from the buildings of our University in the city, seems to us an intelligent, didactic reading for meeting the general aims and the specific objectives that our University proposes to continue developing now from the perspective of the 21st century.

An age-old institution such as our University, which has known how to preserve and continue using a set of buildings that are probably among the most unique in university architecture worldwide, is now embarking with this proposal upon a new reading of its tasks for the new century, which demands new qualifications of the creation and diffusion of knowledge. If the buildings which today house the Administration and the Central Offices of our University represent the best visible model of the physical space of the European university of the ancien rĂ©gime, where the functions of the Lower Schools and the Upper Schools were magnificently outlined, the proposal now put forward for the expansion of the University in Villamayor is a wise reading of the tasks that the institution should undertake during the next decades. It is well known that one of the essential categories in any teaching task, together with the distribution of time, is space, that most suited to the type of teaching intended. This is why in our planner’s project the attribution to and specialization in the agricultural area of teaching and research, the botanical sphere, is so appropriate, together with the theoretical and practical nature it is endowed with. Also magnificent is the interpretation of the environmental space, which is transformed while observing a scrupulous respect for possible impact, taking advantage of the special natural teaching resources that the river bank area offers and providing teachers and students, but also citizens and visitors, with many personal readings arid much enjoyment, thus enriching research and the teaching/learning processes.

If this project, designed by a specialist in university areas, is respected in all its details, our University will one day be able to show from the Villamayor campus an explicit example of the environmental, didactic and research values predominant during a stage of its long history.

Our University, born in a mediaeval ecclesiastic space in 1218, had the fortune to have at its disposal, from the end of the 15th century, a set of Renaissance buildings emblematic for universal culture, and now has the opportunity to build a university architectural space adapted to the educational and research demands of society for the next decades of the 21st century. Hence we consider appropriate and intelligent the proposal made by our campus planner for our University in a new context of space and time.

- Vice-Rector of Planning and Teaching Innovation of the University

Honor Award 2005




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