After the collapse of one of the six-headed palm trees in the center of town in Daya Vieja, Spain, Joaquín Alvado Bañón designed “El Mirador de la Palmera” with the excuse of a structural support for the tree.
We wanted to connect the town center with the orchards in the surroundings to show the visitors the change of landscape atmospheres along the different seasons. We have created a lookout tower with a spiraling promenade that culminates in a spectacular narrow overpass that juts out and over a major town thoroughfare. El Mirador de la Palmera offers stunning views of the Vega Baja, Rojales and La Marina.
The result of this odd structure is the “Variation Guggenheim 3”, or “Viewpoint from the Palm Grove,” a three story spiraling metal walkway. In the Spanish town of Daya Vieja, on the southwestern coast of Spain, a grove of six palm trees has an unusually grand support system. We have designed the structure with round bars or 2, 4 and 6 centimeters of diameter, it was a kind of game played in a 3D structural design program; this game lasted more than 8 months of predefinitions and redrawing.
While the Mirador certainly uses more materials, and takes up more space, than a traditional support system would, it deserves credit for bringing visitors closer to the trees and creating a pleasant experience, while performing a valuable function as well. In addition to the nice views and fun structure, the idea of making the tree a focal point and working with them is an example of the sustainable thinking that infiltrates much of today’s architecture.
The tower looks rather like a roller coaster made for pedestrians. Instead of speed, the Mirador offers awesome, 360 degree views of Daya Vieja. El Mirador de la Palmera designed in Spain, serves both as a spiraling walkway/lookout tower and a brace for the palm trees.