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A 7,500m2 -site, Lot 4 of the Plan Parcial de Reforma Interior "Ciudad Deportiva del Real Madrid"

Madrid, Spain

Gross Floor Area
75,250m2 above grade, 45,000m2 below grade

Torre Espacio Castellana S.A.
Grupo Villar Mir

Time Frame
Planning: 2001–
Construction: 2004–
Completion: 2008

Torre Espacio

Madrid, Spain
Completed 2008


Lead Designers:


Henry N. Cobb
José Bruguera


Office tower

Click on image to enlarge

Torre Espacio occupies an exceptionally privileged site on the most important avenue in Madrid. The program consists of 43 office floors, two corporate floors at the top of the tower, three floors of commercial space at the base of the building, and six levels of underground parking. Besides providing efficient and attractive offices, as one of its city's most prominent buildings it will energize the space in which it stands and animate the skyline of Madrid.

The design of Torre Espacio evolves from a square plan at its base to a gently curved lozenge, shaped by the intersection of two quarter circles, at its crown. Were this a work of sculpture, such a form could readily be carved from a solid block of stone. But as a work of architecture, its intersecting curved surfaces are necessarily composed of many separate panels that must be individually fabricated and assembled. Hence, there was a need to discover and adopt a geometric order that can rationalize and facilitate the desired evolution from square to quarter circle. We have found this order by subdividing the building section into 44 horizontal layers and then subdividing each quarter circle of the plan into an equal number of radial segments. The intersections of successive layers in section with successive segments in plan define points along a vertical curve. Because the mathematical formulae describing this curve are based on the cosine, we call it a cosine curve.

An important characteristic of the cosine curve is that while it simplifies fabrication and assembly of the curtain wall, its rate of curvature is not constant but rather changes gradually over its entire length. This gives the resulting tower form its distinctive and visually appealing sense of energy, almost as if it were a living organism that has sprung from the earth on which it stands.


Major Components

52-story office tower: 43 office floors (floor plates: 1,240m2 – 1,810m2), 2 corporate office floors, 3 floors of commercial space at the base of the tower, and 6 levels of underground parking




American Institute of Architects, New York State Chapter: Design Awards: Citation


Pei Cobb Freed & Partners services

Architectural Services through Design Development; Construction Documents and Construction Administration for exterior envelope and public spaces; coordination with Associate Architect on Construction Documents and Construction Administration


Associate Architect

Reid Fenwick Associados, Madrid



MC2, Madrid



Promec, Madrid



R. Urculo Ingenieros Consultores, Madrid



Photo credits

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