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A monumental inversion. 

“Delirious relationship between nature and Athens”

Modern Stoa, exhibition centre & debate infrastructure.
Guide : Nicola Marzot, Sien van Dam, Paddy Tomesen.
TU Delft, M.Sc 1, 2021
Studio: Public Buildings
Location : Athens, Greece
Group: Darshik Parejiya, Elisa Pastorelli, Peyvand Taremi

Keywords: Monumental, Delirious city, Connectivity, Urban Stoa, Urban green, Sustainability.

Athens is a very significant city for its history and monuments, that are sprawl all around its broad urban pattern. Does the city actually require new monuments? And, if yes, what should this new monument look like? Our speculation started from an observation of the relationship between the nature and the city in the past, when the city itself was surrounded by a “delirious” nature and the stoa’s constituted the architectural boundary of the urban pattern. The nature was monumental and spread without any limit. Nowadays the situation is reverse: we physically experienced a “delirious city”, where is not possible to define any boundaries and where nature has a marginal role. From this speculation we elaborated our position towards a new project for Athens: give back the “nature” to the city, responding to the essential requirements of sustainability. Our “artificial nature” will reinterpret the ancient stoa, the monumentality of the past and will be designed as an infrastructure to explore connectivity in a modern way. 

Sustainable : Connectivity : Intimacy Green Tissue: Our idea of intimacy has been translated by creating public squares which connect the green domain. At some points the green even carves the building or crawls top of the roof in order to import and extend the sense of intimacy from outdoor to indoor. The green is not only designed for the purpose of intimacy and leisure but is also integrated with the essential principles of sustainability.

Does the city actually require new monuments? And, if yes, what should this new monument look like?

Montage.

Green catalouge:

Understanding the various relationships

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Existing conditions between the built environment and nature were studied to understand the relationships between them. Examples ranged from plato academy to parks to streets. Diagrams below were conceptualized.

 
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Design:

Evolution diagrams and exploded axo.

The intervention connects the wetlands, amphitheater, exhibition center, and green roof that is facilitated through a green central atrium. The dramatic route of movements adds another layer experientially that blurs the boundaries between the nature and the building.

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Strategies:

Movement of mud

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Movement of mud from excavation to construction.

Repurposing the mud excavated on site for landscaping and construction of rammed earth wall rather than dumping it.

Water management

Recycling the water from the building for landscaping. 

Collecting the rain water and reusing it.

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Cooling & Ventilation

Use of courtyard and cross ventilation to cool down the building. Thick rammed earth walls protect the building from harsh sunlight but also thermally insulate the building during winters.

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Noise cancellation

Use of vegetation and thick rammed earth walls to reduce noise from the nearby metro tracks.

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Technology:

Materiality

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The choice of materials was to promote circularity and flexibility of materials. Mud excavated during the process of construction is re-purposed as a building material. This Rammed earth forms the exterior facade of the building which also helps tackle the extreme climate. The structure is dual in nature; heavy rammed earth and concrete is used in enclosed spaces, whereas upper structure is timber. Pre-cast modules are used for flexibility and future expansion/disassembly. These pre-cast modules are made from ferrock concrete which comprises of 95% recycled materials. During the process of construction bamboo is used as the primary material for scaffolding, which later is re-purposed as railing.

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Mandarin tree

Judas tree

Lemon tree

Carob tree

Daffodil

Hyacinth

Ophrys speculum

Christ's thorn