Designed by Onat Öktem and Ziya Imren, the proposal for the Çanakkale Municipality “Green” Cultural Center & Municipality Building, which won an honorable mention, aims to create a new focal point located at the intersection of two busy pedestrian and vehicle axes, that strengthens the urban identity. The project intends to achieve a sharing/networking space that supports the everyday life of urban dwellers with social and cultural activities/facilities/uses, and a human-centered urban space that is also respectful to environmental values. More images and architects’ description after the break.
The open and semi open spaces that enable pedestrian access to the public square are designed as a sequence of the recreational spaces within the urban fabric. While this approach contributes to the integration of the urban landscape with the public space, green platforms created on different levels enable the physical continuity of surrounding open, green spaces. Open and semi-open spaces and green platforms are designed so that visitors and urban dwellers could move away and breathe from the busy urban life. In this sense these spaces are complemented with landscape elements such as water, greenery and seating units.
With the aim of offering a sharing/networking space that allows new social experiences, the project adopted an urban design approach that increases the use of social spaces within the program, such as cafes, art galleries, children’s club, and multi-purpose halls. In this sense, rather than an introverted space, a variety of activity spaces are designed open to public use, making the municipality building and the cultural center easily accessible, where social interactions take place between all urban dwellers.
The public space is intended to be a focal landmark for the social life of urban dwellers. In this context, while the physical mass of the tower in the public square supports the landmark quality within the urban scale; the library, café and a media library in the tower which is available for public use throughout the day make it also a social and cultural focal point.
The municipality building and the public space with socio-cultural facilities are designed within the framework of “green building design”, highlighting sustainable principles. The wind turbine on the tower generating electric, the water collection unit meeting the water need for public pools, the photovoltaic and thermal panels on the façades providing light and heat energy, green roofs and courtyards, all contribute to the sustainable quality of the square and the building.
Green architectural solutions today are becoming increasingly common providing visual aesthetics to the urban fabric as well as contributing to environmental preservation in many aspects such as collection of rain water, noise reduction, and heat loss reduction. The “green building” designed for Çanakkale highlights two main systems among others, for sustainable usage; the green courtyard system and the green roofs.
The courtyard system especially highlighted in the architectural setup of the municipality and the cultural center, not only creates social networking spaces but also are focal points where the green spaces meet. A special grass seed mixture is chosen for these spaces that necessitates low water and can grow in shade. The courtyards will be irrigated with the purified rain water by a high efficiency drip irrigation system. As for the selection of trees, “betula alba” which necessitates less water, creates shadow in summer and does not obstruct sun lights in winter is preferred.
Green roofs are the second major system used in the ecological design of the building. Green roof systems are intended to be used as theme gardens for the municipality and the cultural center. Being an essential part of the ecological design system, these roofs can hold up to 90% of rain water due to storm water management. Thus, while using the collected water for irrigation, they play an important role for the prevention of floods. The green roofs are also preferred for their contribution to the insulation of the building. Plantation on the roofs act as a filter, improving the air and water quality. Green roofs are also chosen because they help to lower urban air temperatures and combat the heat island effect in urban settings.
Requiring less water and care are important criteria for the plantation of these spaces. In this respect self-renewing trailing plants that can adapt to a 40 cm soil thickness on the roof are favored such as sedum hispancum, sedum sarmentosum, sedum spurium, and sedum palmeri.
Architects: Onat Öktem and Ziya Imren Location: Çanakkale, Turkey Collaborators: Yakup Koçak, Tamara Nazari Consultants: Ekin Ekiz, Yücel Cabadağ, Özge Gökmen, Servet Seden Çakıroğlu, Kadri Uygar Candemir, Ufuk Cesur Type: Competıtıon – 3. Honorable Mentıon Year: 2012