A landscape building (mimesis and modern pride)
The project is shaped by the context: the long three storey building covered by the steel white platform roof looks like a contemporary re-edition of the old Beton Hala concrete building. His shape, lying down on the riverside, doesn’t block out the view of the fortress from the river. Meanwhile it generates the car parking, being a sort of dam containing cars. From the Kalemegdan hill, the new waterfront complex shows himself as a one-storey building, a thin long line whose shining roof reflects the sky like the sparkling water of the Sava River. This floor of the waterfront complex hosts the exhibition areas.
The green covering of the car parking extends the Kalemegdan Park till the doors of the new building. This plateau is midway between a green park and a urban square and it is a possible outdoor extension of the exhibition area. Coming from the international passenger ports, tourists reach the plateau thanks to a wide ramp that actually we can define a skew square, dealing with the old houses of Kosancicev venac area. For these users, the new plateau constitutes the gate of the Kalemegdan Park and his museums and entertainment network whose starting point is the Beton Hala waterfront complex. To reach the top of the hill, you can climb on the footpaths or enter the hill’s core to take the new lift. This lift share the concept that led the construction of ancient paths driving to the fortress: half carved in the ground, half built on it, it joins together economic convenience, respect fot the hill gradient, need to be not to much outstanding, capacity of help orientation as a landmark.
The new Beton Hala waterfront center will become the linking between Kalemegdan Park and the linear park that runs beside the Sava River. The long building works like a hub, recollecting all the paths to and from the fortress hill. These paths reach the site at different levels and meet altogether in the large green plateau behind the slab, while in front of the building a wide belvedere face the museum system on the other side of the river.
Under the platform roof
The new building has three floors: the ground floor and the first floor host the commercial areas and look more massive, enveloped by a metal structural skin. These two floors overlook the river while on the other side they are directly connected with the covered parking. This is like an ancient stoa, with a back side closed by a wall and a front side protected by a porch. The giant order porch underlines the public space role of Beton Hala flat roof and his function as an observation platform over the Sava River. The third floor hosts the exhibition areas and is a see-through glass enclosure connecting several solid boxes coming outside on the plateau. This floor works with the landscape and is thought as a covered part of the park more than as a building. So that the exhibition complex is a network of several boxes spread on the artificial plateau. Boxes contain different functions such as the conference hall, the cafè, the temporary exhibition pavilion which can work independently and at different hours, being accessible directly from the plateau. This outdoor green space becomes the actual main hall of the exhibition complex.
Location: Belgrade, Republic of Serbia