BAMIYAN | AFGHANISTAN    Institutional | Educational    26.000 sqm    Public Competition    Concept    @PdP east

The fabric of the scheme grows out of the ground in a series of parallel walls, each made from the same earth they are from. The walls create and define spaces, enclosures, shade, views, privacy and openness. The programme of the brief exists between the walls where roofs span across. Courtyards, paths and ramps link these spaces together through a series of informal routes. The user will experience visiting the building as a varied journey which will change from moment to moment in the relationship between inside and outside, the scale of the spaces, the degree of enclosure, and the relationship to the countryside around.

The design is not prescriptive in the organisation of the spaces but facilitates a whole series of possibilities of use and therefore interaction. We hope that the visitor will come to the building for a variety of different purposes which may involve using the building itself, but not necessarily.

With the majority of the building comprising outdoor space the scheme spreads over a large part of the site. In the upper part it is buried and the walls then appear from the ground and extend into the lower part of the site where they begin to fracture and create the ‘in-between’ courtyard spaces and openings facing the cliffs opposite. When viewed from a distance the form of the series of overlapping walls will cause it to blend harmoniously into the landscape. In our opinion the surrounding scenery is so unusually beautiful and has so much meaning that the building itself should not try to compete.

Project developed at PdP east.