In 2006, IaaC (Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia) decided to set up a kind of fabrication laboratory, as a platform for students projects. “In many other schools, the same was happening, creating prototyping facilities. IaaC was collaborating with the MIT, so instead of setting up another prototyping laboratory, we experimented together the creation of a Fab Lab, for more than the students. It opened in May 2007.”
But why a Fab Lab in an architecture institute? “The approach to architecture here is very wide, with different mediums, from bits to geography, from a very small scale to a territory. Understanding that the new technologies emerging would transform cities and societies.”
Tomas Diez (intern there in 2007) became in charge of the lab set up: collaborating with the MIT, choosing the machines, running the projects. “The Fab Lab was thought for the students to make architectural prototypes but also for the people. Not only to reproduce things as they are, but to make almost anything, stuffs you cannot find on a shelf.” Here are some of the projects developed there.
In 2016, “the mission and philosophy are the same, transitioning to the FabCity! We now have different users, with pros, FabAcademy students and kids, but always want people to leave with something.”