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Brief Published: 8 Nov 2011

Factoria Joven Skate Park


The Factoria Joven (Youth Factory) skate park and community centre in Madrid, Spain is providing local teens with a multi-purpose biking, skating and climbing haven that outshines all but the most vibrant of architecture.

Perfectly demonstrating how urban sports are shifting way out of the shadows of their more traditional, mainstream counterparts, the centre was designed by local architects SelgasCano. Key features include an undulating façade – inspired by the winding body and colourful skin of a Chinese dragon – which doubles as a series of skate ramps; and translucent walls, which allow both internal and external spaces to be lit simultaneously at night.

The complex also includes a computer lab, dance studio and spaces for street theatre, music and video productions, as well as graffiti art.

Local physical education teacher Javier Rodriguez Jimenez came up with the concept in 2006, after studying the subject of humanisation and urban spaces at college. He has worked closely with the architects ever since to bring the project to fruition this year.

For more on the rise of urban sports and how brands are realising the value of their spaces, see our Retail report: Branding the City.