ARCHITECTURAL COMPETITION FOR THE RENOVATION OF THE MUNICIPAL THEATRE OF CORFU FACADES AND THE ENTRANCE PIAZZA
Location: Corfu, Greece
Area: 6.750 sq.m.
I. Armeni, T. Bristoyanni, K. Hatzopoulos and A. Kokkini
Consultant: H. A. Tessas
The proposed solution for the renovation of the facades of the theater and the entrance piazza answers to the historical, functional, aesthetic,
technical, environmental and economic issues posed in the competition brief.
Regarding the historical issues, the developed design responds to the matter of acceptance of the new building and to its comparison to the
demolished Municipal Theatre by C. Pergolesi, through the sense of openness that is now offered inbreathes life to the theatre, transforming
the building and consequently its entrance square to a recognizable meeting point, ideal for public gathering and play.
The building’s functionality is highly improved. Most of the interior spaces are now accessible to people with reduced mobility and the entrance
to the opposite building of the Prefecture is optimised. The expansion of the foyer on the first floor, the displacement of the tickets office,
and the restaurant and cafeteria added, functionally organise the building and offer new spaces to be embraced by the public. The arches situated
on the side facades are closed with glass panels so that the previously dysfunctional archways are enriched with new cultural and commercial uses
such as shops, bookstore and exhibition spaces. The creation of a second elevated square that dominates the main facade suggests a pleasant outdoor
extension of the foyer that symbolically interacts with the square. The offices of the art direction and the choir rehearsal rooms are renovated
according to up-to-date functional specifications and, thanks to the new facades, enjoy the natural light and the views to the street. Simultaneously,
the activity taking place inside is projected to the life of Theotoki road, making the theatre’s presence strongly felt. The elevation of the chorus
rehearsal rooms partially hides the theatre’s fly tower, which appears lighter nonetheless, because of the proposed use of glass that is
illuminated at night.
As far as aesthetic quality is concerned, elements of the local architectural tradition are maintained and innovatively reused in the proposed
design and attention is given to the playful alteration of transparency during the day. The building’s skin changes as the sun moves and aspects
of the interior are gradually revealed until the maximum sense of transparency is reached, after sunset, with the suitable illumination of the
The new configuration of the side facades leaves most of the existing structural system intact, and new light-weight elements are added throughout
the building. The rainwater that slowly destroyed the theater is efficiently driven through water pipes, situated behind the new skin, to the city’s
The overall treatment of the facades indicates a double skin that creates a uniformly shaded and naturally ventilated shell, inside of which
insulation is placed. This, in addition to the proposed configuration of the fly tower that promotes the natural ventilation of the interior,
makes the proposal environmentally friendly. As to active energy systems, solar panels are applied to the roof, taking advantage of the favorable
orientation and providing a significant part of the building’s electricity consumption.
Concerning the design of the square, importance is given so that the two public buildings and the city walls are highlighted. The water jets and
the proposed planting create a pleasant gathering space, suitable for hosting open events, whereas the underground parking eases traffic congestion.