Expo Zaragoza: Spanish Pavilion as Sustainable Architecture

This past weekend marked the closure of three-month-long Expo Zaragoza 2008. Petz told us about the The Thirst Pavilion, the German Pavilion and the eco-friendly urinals that use no water, chemicals or energy. I was lucky enough to have a long weekend and took in some of the sights while also visiting friends in Zaragoza (Saragossa in English). I must admit that another reason for going was seeing a product I am involved with called the Econo; it was one of the official products of the Expo. It’s really an utter shame that more international publicity was not distributed for this 93-day long event, as there were some amazing things to see. One of the most intriguing buildings in the 25 hectare mini-city was the Pavilion by the Government of Spain. The building was designed by the Navarra architect Francisco Mangado, who was assisted by bioclimatic design specialists from Spain’s National Renewable Energies Centre (Cener). Mangado says the building imitates a forest, and describes it as, “a natural space that is both so simple and so complex, in which the light penetrates the treetops, and the sound of water transports us to an experience which today, because of environmental deterioration and urban lifestyles, is almost a luxury’.