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BBK Bank Headquarters

  • Bilbao, Spain
  • 2010 – TBC
  • BBK (Bilbao Bizkaia Kutxa)
  • Design
  • 25000m2
  • above ground 11,855 m²
  • Tower / 6,145 m²
  • Podium below ground 10234 m²
  • height 22 Floors

The future headquarters for the client Bilbao Bizkaia Kutxa (BBK), a socially-conscious savings bank based in the Bizcaya region, will be sited at the south-eastern end point of the Zorrotzaurre peninsula, a prominent site that faces central Bilbao and has wide views onto the river and the Abandoibarra area with its Guggenheim Museum. For Zaha Hadid Architects this project represents the chance of developing their urban concept for Bilbao, previously drafted in their master plan for Zorrozaurre into tangible architecture.

In addition to their own office facilities, the building will also contain office support spaces such as shared meeting rooms and seminar rooms, amenities, an auditorium and most significantly a charitable activities space.

The prominence of the site calls for a strong architectural statement. The proposal sets out a sculptural form defined by two star shaped plans rotated 45degrees from each other at the top and bottom of the tower. These then merge into each other so that the outer points of one star become the inner points of the other. The result is a profile that changes as the view angle changes.

Major lines of the form are further defined by a structural exo-skeleton that serves both as the primary structure as well as the supporting system for the façade substructure. Together with the structural core, the need for interior columns within the tower is eliminated.

The tower terminates at the crown with a panoramic viewing reception level that is part of the president and director’s offices. The base of the tower merges with the petal like podium where the entrance lobbies, a high street bank branch, a gymnasium and the charitable activities spaces are located. The podium avoids the usual characteristic of towers pedestals presenting themselves as a large mass on top of which the tower stands. Such a mass would separate the tower from the urban activities happening on the ground floor. BBK’s podium instead allows for the tower to directly interact with the ground and enhances this with its own visual and programmatic porosity.


Zaha Hadid Architects


Zaha Hadid with Patrik Schumacher

Project Director

Manuela Gatto

Technical Associate

Dillon Lin

Project Team

Pierandrea Angius, Teoman N. Ayas, Alberto Barba, Muriel Boselli, Maren Klasing, Dillon Lin, Alberto Moletto, Edgar Payan, Arturo Revilla, Ai Sato, Camiel Weijenberg, Seda Zirek

Consultants Engineers

ARUP (Madrid)