Officially established in 1964 in Peru, the 23-member Latin American Parliament moved to Panama in 2005. Despite playing a highly important role in Latin America, for many years the parliament had no official headquarters of its own, and when a choice was made, Panama was selected as the most strategic location on account of its history and geographical position. The building has a floor surface of 7,500 m 2 , which includes 36 offices, 4 main meeting rooms, 2 auditoriums, a cafeteria, library, hall and VIP lounge. There are also a number of rooms with partition walls that can be moved to create seating capacities of between 50 and 300 people.
One of the building’s hallmarks is its rounded tip, triangular shape, at the heart of which stands the main 475-seater auditorium. This spectacular space offers a magnificent view over the bay of Panama and receives a wealth of natural light in return. The offices, meeting rooms and other spaces are connected by a four-floor high central hall that functions as a vertical axis to the building’s various levels. Here, natural light pours in from above to flood the main staircase that connects each of the floors The building’s facade is another interesting feature that consists of a series of ceramic modules that are deliberately arranged to leave openings of various sizes: the larger ones for the auditorium and the smaller ones for the administration offices Mallol & Mallol the architectural studio responsible for designing the indoor and outdoor artificial lighting systems, opted to use predominantly LED iGuzzini luminaires powered by energy derived from renewable sources.
For the general outdoor lighting, LED Wow luminaires were used, while iPro floodlights focus on the flagstaffs and LedTubes highlight the building’s ribbed façade. In the interiors, devices were chosen for their minimum visual impact, like the Easy System and the LED Laser Blade Minimal and IN30 systems. The shape of Gem pendant luminaires also helps indicate certain transit and waiting areas. Without doubt the project’s most difficult and most entertaining challenge was that of reproducing the effect of sun rays on the roof of the main auditorium. The architects achieved this idea of drawing with light using the IN30 and Underscore systems.
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