Program: Knowledge Innovation Center
Architecture cannot live without city. We consider the KIC not an island isolated from city, but a space grows with time and city: A constantly evolving monument.
The future KIC will act as a driver to activate existing site and the surrounded city of Tripoli. We incorporate urban thinking, to consider RKIF be connected with broader territories, and thus become part of the city. To create such connection, we imagine a courtyard enclosed by several building volumes, creating a room in the city. This open-air space prepares a stage, a backdrop for interior garden of flowers and light. Niemeyer’s existing structures are gentlely attached and incorporated as components. They are exposed to the outer urban environments with their full lengths. The old and new complements with each other, composing into an indivisible new whole.
The surrounded urban fabrics are invited into the site, growing into an abstraction cluster of blocks. The boundaries between the city and the site are thus grained, blurred and dissolved. The heights of the volume are strictly controlled in order to merge with Tripoli’s skyline. The new building elevates at two diagonal corners, creating recognizable icons, and descent in its middle, to be humble to its neighbours. The appearance of the KIC suggests a dune in the desert. In such a way it shares dual qualities of both bigness and smallness, hard and soft, monumentality and intimacy.
The new KIC does not simply construct mere inhabitable “shelters” or provides appropriate spaces for human activities. Instead, it has always augmented human cognitive performance by constantly leveraging and reconfiguring specific spatial apparatuses. As the future KIC works as a platform of collaboration, we want to introduce an open structure to stimulate social interactions. Arch, the element commonly used in Niemeyer’s designs is incorporated here and transformed into structural motifs. These arches articulated into frameworks to accommodate diverse programs, transportations and facilities. The frameworks make flexible units, moderate mixture of the programs and future changes dominant features of the design. The KIC becomes a living organ, which is expected to grow and develop.
If Niemeyer built monuments of permanency, they stay still in the river of time. It is our intension to cherish the unfinished and uncertain aspects of the original settings, and to transform them into an evolving architecture, belonged simultaneously to the past, present and future.
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