The Nautical Node is a research, business and education hub related to the blue economy sector in the city of Barcelona. The site is located in the Northern Harbour at the tip of La Barceloneta.
The Nautical Node brings together the Nautical Studies Faculty of the UPC and the Blue Industry Incubator of Barcelona Activa. It is conceived as a modern nautical agora, a meeting place for students, entrepreneurs and professionals in the sector.
The building will also house specific research installations such as:
- a pool for hydrodynamic simulations,
- a wind tunnel for aerodynamic simulations and
- an advanced training simulator for captains and navigators.
Some of these unique installations will be visible to the public on the ground floor, becoming an important part of the building’s identity. The building borrows its composition from the neighbourhood of La Barceloneta and is designed to negotiate between the different scales in the adjacent buildings.
The project seeks to empower urban space by blurring physical borders and to create a fluid relationship between indoor and outside spaces. The perforations in different directions and positions generate interior and exterior relations that connect the building and the city.
The volumetric composition and alterations in the façade allow the building to be perceived with different scales and nuances. The structure is inspired by large port cranes and consists of seven large structural frames with suspended slabs. The structure allows for large column-free areas on the lower floors to accommodate the agora, the 30x30m research pool and the wind tunnel.
- Location: Barcelona, Spain
- Architect: MestresWåge Arquitectes
- Lead Architects: Maria Mestres, Magnus Wåge
- Project Team: Marc Busquets, Ona Marija Auskelyte, Sam Azrak
- Fluids: PGI
- Quantity surveyor: Ardèvol
- Structure: Other Structures
- Urban planning: Modest Batlle
- Client: BIMSA, Barcelona City Council
- Year: 2021
- Images: Josep Villanueva, Courtesy of Poch