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L E V I Z O U G R A V A N I PA P. A D A N T O N A K I S S H A M M A S

A RC H ME D IU M COM P E T I T I O N S IN G LE

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COM PE TITION


X | Y TOWERS

The project is conceived as a duality, where two separate longitudinal prisms [towers] are placed in confrontation; one vertical and one horizontal. These two gestures intend to enhance the visitor’s experience by combining the primordial connection to the Rovaniemi landscape with a metaphysical, upward view of the Lapland sky.


The horizontal tower [tube] shielded by a wooden skin is fused into the natural environment, while the vertical observation tower emerges over the hill-crest, piercing the pine forest with its distinguished concrete materiality. The building’s placement provides a panoramic view of both mountain and city, while a sufficient amount of distance from the access point allows the walker to come in contact with nature. The pedestrian road leading to the building is carved in relevance to a cartesian 100m grid that has been superimposed on the natural slope. The outcome is an elaborate mixture of orthology and organic vagueness— a set of possible routes which depend on the walker ’s preferences towards comfort and distance. The footpath leads to an outdoor space which serves as a connector between the two towers while locating their main entrances. The tube, kept camouflaged and


close to the ground, encapsulates the spherical planetarium while containing the accommodation area and the Finnish sauna. The adjacent, slanted wall provides a semi-private outdoor space for the sauna pool and outdoor facilities.The upright tower - apart from the inbuilt restaurant - exists as a skeletal synthesis of vacant space and staircases; a gradient, vertical ‘room’ both interior and exterior that rises towards the observatory point.Observation is not conceived as a static experience but rather as a climactic ascension through a concrete shell - overt only towards the north - gradually proceeding to the top where boundless view is unveiled. There, above ground, the observatory point turns to flotation. It exists under the Northern Lights spectacle yet hovers over the pine forest.The visitor situated both under and above view level becomes part of the view himself.


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OBA Observatory  

Archmedium competition entry-may 2012 Alevizou Penny / Natasa Gravani / Demetris Shammas / Andreas Papadantonakis

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