OIL FACTORY BY RICARDO BAK GORDON


Marmelo Mill
The olive oil factory Marmelo Mill, was designed in order to answer all the functional requests to become the largest olive oil mill in Portugal, but also to reveal the attitude of the company regarding its cultural strategy respect to their clients and landscape.

Marmelo Mill
For this project the portuguese architect Ricardo Bak Gordon, has won the 2011 FAD Award with his project “2 Casas em Santa Isabel”, worked together with people who love experimenting in many areas and who, just like him, seek cultural approaches towards landscapes and towards the hidden charms of commercial buildings. The logical consequence is the conjugation of efficiency and timelessness along with the relation to the surrounding scenery, the result is a building peacefully lying as an abstract, white volume at the heart of a plantation, embedded among 3 million olive trees.
Marmelo Mill
The architect had to face two important questions: What is it that can make an oil factory interesting and how can the factory be connected with the local conditions? The consistent attitude towards landscapes is an important relation point for any architect in Portugal. Apart from a good technical execution, the operating company also made a careful handling of the surrounding landscape a requirement. This had become a guiding line for Ricardo Bak Gordon and a crucial criterion for his work.
Marmelo Mill
The beauty of the design of the Herdade do Marmelo oil factory is unveiled through the feeling of floating. The factory has been designed in a way that the olive plantation reaches the building directly. The building has two horizontal levels. The lower level establishes the connection with the soil, and the dark color of the walls goes along. The second level, however, is bright and white. It floats, carried by stilts, above the lower level and spans in two directions with its projecting arms. The workers are protects from the weather by these arms. The whole work area is generously lit.
Marmelo Mill
The building is a striking eye-catcher which is not only visible during the day. During the olive harvesting period, the building can already be seen from a distance 24/7, since the projecting arms are illuminated at night.
Marmelo Mill
Whether it’s the consequent approach is the result of his thoughts or the response to the principal’s requirements, Ricardo Bak Gordon can handle the construction of an oil factory with the same sensitiveness as building a residential complex or a museum.
Marmelo Mill
The beauty of the design of the Herdade do Marmelo oil factory is unveiled through the feeling of floating. The factory has been designed in a way that the olive plantation reaches the building directly. The building has two horizontal levels. The lower level establishes the connection with the soil, and the dark color of the walls goes along. The second level, however, is bright and white. It floats, carried by stilts, above the lower level and spans in two directions with its projecting arms. The workers are protects from the weather by these arms. The whole work area is generously lit.
Marmelo Mill
The building is a striking eye-catcher which is not only visible during the day. During the olive harvesting period, the building can already be seen from a distance 24/7, since the projecting arms are illuminated at night.
Architects: Ricardo Bak Gordon
Location: Ferreira do Alentejo, Portugal
Client: Elaia Lagar
Project Year: 2010
Project Area: 47,723 sqm
Photographs:
FG + SG – Fernando Guerra, Sergio Guerra

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