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San Miguel de Tucumán


“The relational space is a social and cultural meeting point that can be used from various perspectives to encourage entry into artistic appreciation and practices. The relational space is a means of communication in itself where people interrelate, learn, reflect, recreate their activities, and discuss their perspectives. If it is a place, a comfortable infrastructure that allows meeting, visiting, exchanging, in a socially pleasant and culturally diverse environment. The  physical space where different circumstances will intersect, people who are looking for a colloquial time and space (...), people who want to tell about their activities, people who do not want to talk but rather listen to others; and it is from this interweaving of perspectives that new interactions of mutual learning emerge, which depending on how the relational space is guided, can become enriching and motivating for subsequent incursions, either actively or passively, as spectator users, in expressive and creative spheres. ."[1]



It is evident that the refunctionalization of the building from a Bank to an administrative cultural center is not only a programmatic change, it entails a change in its relationship with the city, which is why we propose to revitalize it through urban scale operations.



The plinth of the former Banco Nación building expresses solidity, strength; It restricts and controls citizen access to it, thus fulfilling the function for which it was designed. Based on the change in function, we propose to dematerialize the plinth and lower the level of the ground floor of the building to the sidewalk level, changing the meaning of the basement and enabling relationships between the city and the building in accordance with the new functions.



On the ochava and San Martin street, axis of different activities, an alcove is designed, it enriches the relationships between the exterior and interior space, between the individuals who walk along the narrow path, those who are inside the building and the who enter and leave it.   From the recess you can see the coffee, it supports multiple activities, functioning like this  as an external attractor for the Multifunctional center and from that for the Popular Savings Bank.



On top of the historic building we projected a terrace, which brings visitors closer to the urban landscape through the visuals it provides.


The new office building is articulated with the historic hall of the Former Banco Nación through a common void that contains the public vertical circulations, in this way an enriching relationship is generated between both functions.



Polyfunctional cultural center

The flexibility of the ground floor of the Historical Hall allows for multiple reconfigurations of the space to make the development of different activities feasible.

It is the conducive space for the incorporation of coffee, it not only acts as an external attractor,  and place of cultural and social revitalization where  Activities and events for artistic dissemination are carried out (plays, parades, presentations of books and artists, etc.). It is mainly a relational space, it is the meeting and communication point between the different visitors, users, artists and workers of the administrative cultural center, it is the place where people interrelate, learn and reflect.

On the upper floor we propose the exhibition room, it is visually related to the activities carried out on the ground floor, but at the same time it is located in a confined place, making greater control of it possible.

The auditorium is strategically located so that it can be used together with the cultural center, with the office building or independently.

Based on the possibility stated in the bases of incorporating elements of the cultural center program as a contribution from the contestant, and our interest in the cultural center functioning as a space for cultural revitalization, we propose artistic production workshops, which serve as an expansion for the development of their activities on the terrace.



The general insurance department and the occupational risk insurer, comprised of administrative work offices serving the public, are in relation to  the cultural center from the articulating void.

The Various Functional Units and Management department are located on the upper levels, thus obtaining greater privacy and hierarchy. The management level is located in a privileged location in the building, characterized by a high level of privacy, generous spaces, expansion and views of the City.

It was proposed to provide meeting and tour situations that enhance the administrative and cultural functions and, in turn, promote the integration of the popular savings bank with the cultural center and with the city.


Project details:

National Ideas Competition for the Refunctionalization and Expansion of the Historic Building of the Former Banco Nación.

Authors: Architect Ezequiel Muñoz -  Architect Adrián Olivero.

Collaborators: Mariel Cámara – Roberto Pérez.

Date: 2010

Place: Tucumán, Argentina.


Moirë Architects Studio Mar del Plata, Argentina.

[1] The relational space. Communication and dissemination model in a cultural center. Light Aranda.

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