Temple for Nuestra Señora del Valle Competition

  • Location:
    Isla de Margarita, Venezuela
  • Date:
  • Team:
    Enlace Arquitectura
  • Photography:
    Enlace Arquitectura, C.A
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The design for the Temple of Nuestra Señora del Valle in Margarita Island takes advantage of the site´s dimensions and privileged location to build a place that can be enjoyed year round in addition to creating more comfortable conditions for the celebration of the great annual mass in honor of the Virgin. The 6 hectares of land are used in part for the Temple, but also for a museum and for a large park. 

The temple is made of porous walls of concrete hollow blocks that allow air and light to pass through them. They also create dynamic interior shadows and a tenuous lighting that protects the interior from direct sun lighting. The altar is the main focus of the space and has a large window behind that opens on deep views of the park. A 45-meter high bell tower islocated on the northern edge of the temple. It can be reached by visitors along a spiral staircase that has defined opening along the ascent in all four cardinal directions pointing to Porlamar, the sea in the distance and the existing Basilica and main square on the eastern edge.  

The park represents the heart of the proposal. Radial rows of trees point toward the temple´s exterior altar and provide shade to the faithful during the annual mass. A museum on the southern edge of the property showcases objects of veneration and the history of the Virgin of the Valley. 

The project takes into consideration several sustainability strategies in terms of air circulation, thermal insolation, the management and reuse of rainwater and the use of alternative energies to reduce consumption.