Studio Woodroffe Papa proposed a radical solution to this competition to create additional space for Madrid’s most important art museum. Whereas the competition asked entrants to attach a new space at the back of the main museum building, we connected the four buildings of the museum with an underground central spine of shared facilities, temporary galleries, retail spaces, cafes and entrance lobbies. Running beneath Calle de Felipe IV, this would include servicing and parking facilities, freeing up local streets from stationary cars and buses.
Multiple entrances and a careful organisation of ticketed and non-ticketed areas would allow visitors to enter at many points, either to view the exhibits or simply to cross the site. The new space would mirror el paseo, the centuries-old past-time of wandering along the Calle de Felipe IV between the city centre and the Parque del Retiro.