In terms of construction and energy efficiency, Spain has one of the highest indexes of obsolete buildings among the developed countries. In the case of high-rise hotel buildings, this problem is further added to by the low levels of safety in the case of fire. The development of tourism in the 1950s and 60s led to the construction of a large number of high-rise hotels with 30+ floors. Initially, they conformed to lax, undemanding regulations regarding fire resistance in their structural components, fire escape routes, protected staircases, and so on. The requirements of today’s regulations in this field, contained in the Basic SI Technical Building Code Document, often make the renovation of these buildings an impossible task. Installing specially protected staircases can entail traumatic modifications that are sometimes unviable due to structural conditions or economic considerations. Furthermore, the building’s energy efficiency and CO2 emissions do not correspond to environmentally-friendly practices. This paper examines the above questions with regard to the Hotel Tryp Gran Sol in Alicante, Spain. The hotel is 97 m high and has 31 floors. The integrated renovation of the hotel requires serious reflection upon the building’s global response to personal safety, its envelope components and its air conditioning. Architectural solutions and the building’s economic viability for future exploitation as an important element in the building’s life cycle assessment (LCA) are discussed.
construction and demolition waste, energy efficiency, environmental impact, life-cycle assessment, safety in case of fire
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