3rd Prize in the Architectural Composition for a Public Service Building of the Attica Regional Government in Elefsina, Attica, Greece
architects: Orfanos Nikolaos, Stavrakakis Christos
Our main intention is to recognise the area’s distinct character, where the characteristics of a typical urban residential area co-exist with a big industry and an archaeological park of great importance and cultural heritage, within a complex urban puzzle, which lacks of green areas.
In our proposal, moves inside and approaches to the plot play a significant role. Our main idea is a diagonal move which connects the two main entrance points when coming from the city, which, on the one hand, is in balance with the designed outdoor space and the “internal” atrium and, on the other hand, with the solid built volume.
One of our basic choices, is the effort to amplify the intermediate spaces inside and outside the building. Concerning that is a public service office building, functionality for users-visitors and the configuration of a pleasant working environment, are of great importance in resolving the building program, which is re-evaluated focusing on having a working environment which promotes co-operation among the public workers – especially the ones with coherent objective – by choosing forms of spatial organisation which do not accept a strict division between the workers in small closed spaces. This kind of spaces usually face serious issues of natural lighting and ventilation.
Furthermore, regarding the amphitheater design (important node in our proposal), we choose an architectural vocabulary which allows the alter-ability of uses and openness (or closeness) of such a space. At the same time it is concentrically placed in the plan, aiming to create a more organic spatial relation with the spaces around and to create a point of vivid activity (social, political, cultural, economical) for the whole city.
Moves inside the building configure a “closed” circuit, which is more free and only semi-defined at the ground level (as far as accessibility is concerned) and it is more strict and not noisy at the first floor level. These moves define the space transparency and they evolve at physically lightened corridors which “meet” small rest spaces avoiding the monotony of a typical dark rambling corridor.
Finally, the choice of an inclined rooftop assists in forming an “outside” scale with two floors height (like a protection cell) and an “inside” scale with single floor height, which closer to the human scale and makes the building more familiar and intimate.
This inclined rooftop (with the ability to transform into a planted roof) combined with a double cell facade on the outside and the use of blinds on the inside help to the bioclimatic approach of the architectural composition, based on the criteria of having the smallest energy print possible while taking as much possible advantage of natural light, air and cooling.