Valldaura Labs

Valldaura Labs is a project of the Institute of Advanced Architecture of Catalonia to create a Laboratory on Self-Sufficient Habitat. It is located in the center of the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona, in the Collserola Natural Park. The project is developed in a three-story farmhouse built in 1888 that was in very poor condition. The strategy has been to build all the new spaces underground, under and around the farmhouse, in order to have no impact on the landscape while at the same time providing new vitality to the complex. The building includes rooms for students and teachers of the IAAC Master in Advanced Ecological Buildings on the upper floors, a dining room and space for staff on the ground floor that have been faithfully rehabilitated while maintaining the original structure. Below the later plaza the Green Fab Lab has been built, using large-scale brick vaults and allowing in natural light. Likewise, a carpentry shop and a biomass plant have been built that supplies energy to the building. For the rehabilitation of the building, brick and old wood have been recycled in order to give material continuity to the complex. The windows have been manufactured and rehabilitated in the laboratory’s carpentry shop. The Energrid project has also been developed in the buildings, which is based on the Internet of Energy developed from the distributed production of energy and the measurement of small consumption units. Five water tanks of various qualities have also been arranged (drinking, covered, square, grayand black) in order to apply the principle of the Internet of Water. But the project goes beyond the limit of the walls of the farmhouse: the objective is to develop a self-sufficient habitat, which produces all the energy that the building needs, which produces a large part of its food and which generates wood from the forest for the construction of structures and furniture and for the biomass plant itself. In this way a holistic vision for buildings and their environment is developed.

Project Name

Valldaura Labs






Barcelona, Spain


Educational and research lab




2000 m2




Vicente Guallart
Daniel Ibáñez
Elisabet Fabrega




Ionut Conseco
Fernando Meneses
Daniela Frogheri