New Headquarters for BBVA
Madrid, Spain
Competition 2007, project 2007–2010, phase 1 realization 2009–2013, phase 2 realization 2010–2015

At the Periphery of the Capital
BBVA’s new headquarters is located on the northern periphery of Madrid. The site faces the highway and is surrounded by newly built offices, commercial buildings, and residential developments. When the bank acquired the site, eight unfinished office buildings occupied a substantial portion of the land, and as much of the existing buildings as possible were to be incorporated into the new development.

A Carpet
A linear structure of three-story buildings, with courtyards, passages and irrigated gardens, is laid over the entire site – which has a considerable slope – like a carpet, analogous to an Arabian garden. We chose to “internalize” the complex, to design it uniquely around the inner needs of BBVA, given that the surroundings didn’t have much identity, there simply wasn’t much to relate to. The low-rise arrangement fosters communication: instead of taking elevators, people walk up stairs that encourage informal exchange; maximized visual transparency gives everybody a view and generates a sense of community; whilst the relatively small units permit employees to identify with their particular workgroup.

The new headquarters is designed for 6000 pax. Both the site and the scale of the development challenged us to find a radical solution – we choose to create an inward looking oasis in this otherwise anonymous urban landscape, a place that establishes a balance between the natural and the built and that functions both like a small city and a big garden.

The existing buildings are altered to tie in with the new structures, and to create offices and gardens of similar linearity and scale. They are either cut out or filled in to be integrated into the overall “fabric”.

A Southern Type of Architecture

It is a raw architecture, one where the structure is prominently expressed. It is a design that is informed by the strong influence of the solar conditions, which ultimately results in a southern type of architecture. Along the rather narrow inner gardens and streets, concrete columns and cantilevering floor slabs provide shade to prevent excessive sun, which reduces demand for air conditioning. The full height but recessed glazing provides good daylight conditions in the offices in order to minimize artificial lighting.

Along the periphery of the complex we developed brise-soleils that are fixed in between the floor slabs. Unlike the prominent modern references, these are cut out in the lower part at an angle to provide more view and daylight where protection is needed least- resulting in figurative element that vary in direction and size according to the solar angle and program. The sloping site creates another subtle yet influential consequence on the facade as the brise-soleils adjust in height.

Locating BBVA in the Madrid Skyline

A round like plaza is cut out of the carpet, and then, it is as if this mass were tilted upward to become a very slim tower to mark BBVA in the Madrid skyline. In contrast to the low-rise offices, the tower offers another type of workspace, with views across the city and to the mountains. The plaza is planted with hundreds of trees and surrounded by various communal facilities. Together, the plaza and the tower provide orientation to the entire complex.
Herzog & de Meuron, October 2010


Herzog & de Meuron Team:
Partner: Jacques Herzog, Pierre de Meuron, Christine Binswanger, David Koch (Partner in Charge)
Project Team: Nuno Ravara (Associate, Project Director), Miquel Rodríguez (Associate), Stefan Goeddertz (Associate), Benito Blanco, Alexander Franz, Mónica Ors, Thomas de Vries, Alexa Nürnberger, Xavier Molina, Enrique Peláez, Nuria Tejerina, Manuel Villanueva, Ainoa Prats

Fernando Alonso, Joana Anes, Edyta Augustynowicz, Tiago Baldaque, Lucia Bentue, Abel Blancas, Ignacio Cabezas, Aurélien Caetano, Sergio Cobos, Soohyun Chang, Miguel Chaves, Marta Colón de Carvajal, Massimo Corradi, Pastora Cotero, Miquel Del Río, Dorothée Dietz (Visualizations), Aurelio Dorronsoro, Margaux Eyssette, Salvora Feliz, Cristina Fernández, Daniel Fernández, Alfonso García, Patricia García, Cristina Génova, Silvia Gil, Jorge Gomendio, Juan Manuel Gómez, Juan José González-Castellón, Ulrich Grenz, Hendrik Gruss, Paz Gutiérrez Plaza, Carsten Happel, Guillaume Henry, Pasqual Herrero, Carlos Higinio Esteban, Dara Huang, Diana-Ionela Toader, Esther Jiménez, Vasilis Kalisperakis, Hyunseok Kang, Yuichi Kodai, Isabel Labrador, Lorenz Lachauer, Sophia Lau, Monica Leung, Christina Liao (Animations), Cristina Limiñana, Jorge López, Khaled Malas, Sara Martínez, Aram Mooradian, Natalia Miralles, Argel Padilla, Svetlin Peev, Pedro Peña Jurado (Digital Technologies), Simon Pillet, Tomas Pineda, Pedro Polónia, Maki Portilla-Kawamura, Jaume Prieto, Tosca Salinas, Marc Schmidt (Associate), Alexandra Schmitz, Ursula Schneider, Mónica Sedano, Nicola Shunter, Kai Strehlke (Digital Technologies), Günter Schwob (Workshop), Carlos Terriente, Carlos Viladoms, Raúl Torres Martín (Visualizations).

External Supervision: Virgilio Gutiérrez, Xavier Molina

BBVA – Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria S.A.

Design Consultant: Herzog & de Meuron SL, Barcelona, Spain
Executive Architect: CBRE FM Arquitectos, Madrid, Spain; Ortiz y León Arquitectos, Madrid, Spain
General Planning: UTE Nueva Sede BBVA, Madrid, Spain (Drees & Sommer, CBRE FM Arquitectos, Herzog & de Meuron SL)
Cost Consultant: Drees & Sommer S.L, Barcelona, Spain; Integral S.A. , Barcelona, Spain
Electrical Engineering: Arup , London, UK; Arup, Madrid, Spain
Grupo JG , Madrid, Spain; Estudio PVI, Barcelona, Spain (Auditorium + Entrance Pavilion + Tower)
HVAC Engineering: Arup, London, UK; Arup, Madrid, Spain
Grupo JG, Madrid, Spain; Estudio PVI, Barcelona, Spain (Auditorium + Entrance Pavilion + Tower)
Landscape Design: Vogt, Zurich, Switzerland; Benavidez Laperche, Madrid, Spain; Phares, Madrid, Spain
Mechanical, Plumbing Engineering: Arup, London, UK; Arup, Madrid, Spain; Estudio PVI, Barcelona, Spain (Auditorium + Entrance Pavilion + Tower); Grupo JG, Madrid, Spain
Structural Engineering: Arup, London, UK; Arup, Madrid, Spain; BOMA S.L., Barcelona, Spain; INES, Madrid, Spain (Site Supervision)
Urban Design: Ezquiaga S.L, Madrid, Spain
Artistic Supervision: Herzog & de Meuron SL, Barcelona, Spain
Design Project Management: Drees & Sommer, SL, Barcelona, Spain; Integral, S.A, Barcelona, Spain
Joint VentureNueva Sede BBVA, Madrid, Spain: CBRE FM Arquitectos, Madrid, Spain; Drees & Sommer, SL, Barcelona, Spain; Herzog & de Meuron SL, Barcelona, Spain
Project Management: Hill International, Madrid, Spain


Acoustics: Estudi Acústic Higini Arau, Barcelona, Spain
Building Physics: TransSolar Energietechnik GmbH, Stuttgart, Germany; Arup, London, UK; Arup, Madrid, Spain
Catering Consultant: DIMASA, Madrid, Spain
Facade Engineering: Arup, Madrid, Spain; Enar S.L., Madrid, Spain
Lighting Consultant: Arup, London, UK; Estudio PVI, Barcelona, Spain (Auditorium + Entrance Pavilion + Tower)
Security Consultant: SMDOS, Madrid, Spain
Traffic Consultant: Karajan Ing., Stuttgart, Germany
Fire Protection: Arup, Madrid, Spain; Estudi GL, Barcelona, Spain
Carpentry: PH 1 Eusebio Sanchez, Madrid, Spain; PH 2 Acciona, Madrid, Spain
Elevators: Thyssen
Facade: PH 1 Martifer, Portugal; PH 2 Permasteelisa
PH 1 - Electrical: UTE Cobra + Cofely, Madrid, Spain
PH 1 - Facade: Martifer, Portugal
PH 1 - LED Systems: Philips, Madrid, Spain
PH 1 - Lighting: Philips, Madrid, Spain
PH 1 - Natural Stone Exterior Work: Acciona, Madrid, Spain
PH 1 - Natural Stone Interior Work: Editec, Madrid, Spain
PH 1 - Paint Work: Editec (solo aseos), Madrid, Spain; Acciona, Madrid, Spain
PH 1 - Planting: Acciona, Madrid, Spain
PH 1 - Plaster Work (interior) and Roofing: Editec, Madrid, Spain
PH 1 - Plumbing: UTE Atil Cobra + Cofely, Madrid, Spain
PH 1 - Scaffolding and Shell Work: Alsina,Madrid, Spain; Peri, Madrid, Spain
PH 1 - Structure: Secin, Madrid, Spain
PH 1 - Ventilation: UTE Atil Cobra + Cofely, Madrid, Spain
PH 2 - Shell Work (inc. Tower): Alsina, Madrid, Spain
PH 2 - General Contractor and Structure: Acciona, Madrid, Spain
PH 2 - Scaffolding: Alsina, Madrid, Spain
PH 2 - Scaffolding (inc. Tower): Peri, Madrid, Spain

Building Data:
Site Area 636'416sqft / 59'125sqm
Gross Floor Area (GFA): 2'712'281sqft / 251'979sqm
Footprint : 609'614sqft / 56'635sqm
Length: 951ft /290m
Width 620ft / 189m
Height: 305ft / 93m


Gerhard Mack, Herzog & de Meuron: Herzog & de Meuron 2005-2007. Das Gesamtwerk. Band 6. Edited by: Gerhard Mack. Basel, Birkhäuser, 2018.

Gerhard Mack, Herzog & de Meuron: Herzog & de Meuron 2005-2007. The Complete Works. Volume 6. Edited by: Gerhard Mack. Basel, Birkhäuser, 2018.

Luis Fernández-Galiano (Ed.):  Arquitectura Viva Monografias. Herzog & de Meuron 2013-2017.
Vol. No. 191-192, Madrid, Arquitectura Viva SL, 12.2016.

Herzog & de Meuron: A Single Building and a Multifaceted Town: BBVA, Madrid, a Workplace for the Future.

In: BBVA (Ed.). Reinventing the Company in the Digital Age. Madrid, BBVA, 2014. pp. 263-292.
Also published in Spanish: Un Edificio singular y una Ciudad polifacética: BBVA Madrid, un Lugar de Trabajo para el Futuro.
In: Reinventar la Empresa en la Era Digital. Madrid, BBVA, 2014. pp. 263-292.

Herzog & de Meuron. New BBVA Headquarters. In: Luis Fernández-Galiano (Ed.). AV Proyectos. Vol. No. no. 63, Madrid, Arquitectura Viva, 2014. pp. 48-67.

Luis Fernández-Galiano (Ed.): Arquitectura Viva Monografías. Herzog & de Meuron 2005-2013.
Vol. No. 157/158, Madrid, Arquitectura Viva SL, 09.2012.

Guido Musante: Green Projects. Sette Idee di Sostenibilità. Seven Ideas for Sustainability.
In: Flavio Albanese (Ed.). Contemporary Architecture, Interiors, Design, Art. Supplement: Domus. Vol. No. 922, Rozzano, Editoriale Domus S.p.A., 02.2009. pp. 18-22.

El 'sol de Madrid', de dorado a plata.
In: Luis Fernández-Galiano (Ed.). Arquitectura Viva. Vol. No. 122, Madrid, Arquitectura Viva, 2008. p. 5.