Project : Bamiyan Cultural Centre
Location : Afghanistan
Site Area : 26,000sqm
Floor Area : 2,726sqm
Scope : Architecture Design
Timeframe : 2014
Status : Competition Concept
Organizer : UNESCO
A Wall that Connects
Walls are an important element of local architecture to protect against the extremities of climate, but they are also defensive, divisive, unfriendly, and a harsh edge between inside and outside. We think of Bamiyan Cultural Centre as a new and different kind of wall. A wall that protects as it opens up to the surroundings, a wall that grows from the land, a wall that connects people of Bamiyan and Afghanistan with the rest of the world.
Instead of fortress-like walls that are rectangular and territorial, a single continuous and naturally curving wall rise from the land creating spaces that are sometimes protected and cave-like, sometimes open like courtyards, joining different functions into a coherent whole. This continuous curving wall is a rammed earth wall made of various coloured sands from different regions of Afghanistan, a significant landmark that is to be built by the local community.
A point on this site is drawn from sightlines of the Buddha Cliff where a Plaza and Amphitheatre is created. This is the best place on the site to view the Buddha Cliff, and it will be free for everyone to enjoy. The Bamiyan Cultural Centre is organized around this space and view.