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El 'B' Cartagena, Auditorium and Congress Centre


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El “B” is this long construction, a body, that feeds on the heritage -the continuity- of a site’s treatment: THE Cartagena harbour, which is nothing but a harbour in Cartagena, borderline of the city from the sea. Everything here belongs to it, belongs to the port, any port we should say: the immaculate straightness of the pier edge (straight), the invariably calm sea (flat), the artificially horizontal plane of the dock (flat), the sky as the variable background for this plane (plane on a plane?), all based on an artifice to represent the simplest -and by virtue of its simplicity, the most natural, the most immensely artificial- plane that equates to the most natural.

The Alfonso XII dock is 1,000 metres long, exactly a kilometre, where we can assume that we are at the end. A 20 metre wide strip runs the full length, parallel to the edge, which is respected by the buildings. A very pleasant walk can be designed for the city along this strip, a daily procession following the immutable edge. In fact, this promenade is what we encourage; it is what we insert in the building, in a dimensional continuum that seems to dig out an artificial beach, but is actually a continuity of history, because the old El Batel beach was right here, on this very spot. The harbour is artificial, not the beach.
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