The cultural centre »El Soto« is located near a park under the same name in a suburban area of Madrid. The centre was originally supposed to be demolished and replaced by a new structure. The architects supported the idea to maintain the existing building from the 1980s and to redesign it. For one, they aimed at preserving the identity of this local institution and its meaning as a focus of community activity. In addition, renovation was also the more cost-efficient solution. Despite a tight budget they managed to comprehensively ­remodel the building.

The outdated original construction with its white masonry brick and green window elements was changed significantly. The new sheet metal cladding covers the existing brickwork and provides the building with a completely new appearance. For the most part, however, the spatial configuration remained the same.

Three new additions clad in black brick each offer additional space for the library and cafeteria and serve as storage area for the theatre. These new volumes completely alter the street facade. Together with a redesigned ­antespace they define the new entrance area with its striking yellow paving. The flooring continues the yellow colour into the inside of the centre, while the interior spaces otherwise feature a restrained white colour palette.