PIRAEUS CULTURAL COAST AND MUSEUM OF UNDERWATER ANTIQUITIES INTERNATIONAL IDEAS COMPETITION
Location: Piraeus, Greece
Area: 15000 sq.m.
I. Armeni, N. Bekiari, K. Hatzopoulos, T. Moumiadis, T. Antonakaki, M. Tzafeta
This proposal aims at interventions that are sustainable in an environmental and economical level, while communicating an impressive
identity and creating an iconic character for the cultural coast and the surrounding urban areas.
The architectural design of the Museum of Underwater Antiquities interprets the infrastructure of the
old silo in a creative and inventive way. The new proposed reception building of vertical circulation
on the northeast side of the silo marks the project communicatively and morphologically.
It is the main connection between the exhibition spaces, forming distinct visits through the thematic
areas, either linearly or independently, using the new building as the backbone of the museum experience.
By distincting between the old and the new, the visitor has a simultaneous tour, on one hand, of the
history of the building as a grain storage warehouse and on the other, the naval tradition of Greece,
through the exhibition spaces.
The main ground pathway provides a continuity between interior and exterior spaces. New transparent
shading devices are added on the existing building integrating energy efficient photovoltaic glass
sheets on a metal structural system.
On the two long facades perforations create sets of lighted holes that work as media facades where
artists’ and visitors’ events of cultural interaction can take place.
On the Cultural Coast, apart from the Museum of Underwater Antiquities, also proposed are the Museum
of Immigrants, the space of open air cultural events, the Unknown Sailor Memorial, the Aquarium,
the ships’ visiting space and the «Tastes of the World» catering and exhibition area.
Next to the main pedestrian axes lie outdoor activities, such as squares, recreations areas and an
open air sculpture gallery. Also, the redesign of the sea front on graded levels, a play with the
water, creates a physical integration between sea and land.
Environmental management also plays a vital role in the proposed scheme. Building reuse is on its
own a kind of recycling, significantly reducing CO2 emissions during the construction phase.
Bioclimatic architecture principles are applied for natural lighting and ventilation. For cooling,
mist and a water tank are proposed, filtering the air and bringing temperature down 2 to 3 oC,
while rainwater is collected for other uses. On the energy side, the photovoltaic window glass
panels that cover the new building of the museum save energy and produce up to 15% of the total
building energy consumption, while large rooflights provide adequate natural lighting for interior museum spaces.