MINA 1394 OFFICE BUILDING

APRACTICE STUDIO

Photos courtesy of Marcel Rached

MINA 1394 OFFICE BUILDING

APRACTICE STUDIOarchmarathonAPRACTICE STUDIO
Serhal Building, 6th Floor, Suite 640 Cairo Street, Hamra, Lebanon
www.apracticestudio.com
Category:
Workspaces
Project selected:
MINA 1394 OFFICE BUILDING
Location:
Beirut, Lebanon
Year:
2014

Situated on a corner in down town Beirut, and on the edge of Solidere’s jurisdiction, a company charged with redeveloping Beirut Central District following the civil war, provided the opportunity to negotiate its strict, historically selective regulations.
Two volumes varying in height and width, where one aligns to an adjacent historically listed house was a mandatory guideline that, in our view, often produced an obscure outdoor space, rather than a public one, that is eventually made private. Consequently, a strategy to free the public space from the building was adopted.
Formally, the building was conceived as a single volume aligned to the adjacent old house to generate a public space that mirrors the public space of the church across the street. To compensate for the lost ground floor area, the successive floor plates were incrementally increased to generate a folding cantilever hovering above the public spaces.
Programmatically, the accessibility to the building was displaced to the northwestern face and the volume was consequently chamfered in the horizontal and vertical plane to signify the main entrance.
The horizontal striation of the skin became a device to emphasize this negotiation and the porosity and materiality, determined by the internal spatial ergonomics and the resulting projection of the sun path and its context, made the building environmentally conscious.

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