Architecture in the Conflict City
15,815 square meters / 170,230 square feet
The post-conflict city is both a tragedy and opportunity; an environment of suffering, yet a fertile landscape for renewal. An architect’s typical relation to an armed conflict environment is as an agent of reconstruction once fighting stops. But what of a city where conflict is continuous and interminable? How does an architect intervene in a conflict city?
This project proposes architectural interventions that recognize an urban condition where hot and cold conflicts are fluctuating environmental conditions. As conditions change, spaces adapt and architectural elements react by physical operations, shifts in program, or accommodation of different users and types of occupation. Much of the conflict logic embedded throughout the hotel is informed by strategies and spatial reappropriations that local civilians employ to cope with conflict conditions.
Designing for the conflict condition does not suggest perpetuating its continuance. Rather, propositions that recognize varying degrees of hostilities within the urban fabric allow for the generation of unique spatial configurations, both formal and programmatic, with potential for diverse social and cultural use when conflict is cold or in times of relative peace.
Location: Beirut Central District, Lebanon