Graduate project from the programme Political Architecture: Critical Sustainability, Institute of Architecture and Culture
By Benjamin Wells (website)
This project is an attempt to redesign processes of urbanism in Tbilisi, Georgia, through proposing an architecture which facilitates city making as a collective, democratic endeavour. Its focus is a disused power station in the centre of the city, which is transformed into an active organisation where the evolving project of the city can be revealed, defined, challenged and reimagined.
This organisation is framed and directed by architecture – the curation of an arena which allows a polyvocal, conflictual urbanism to evolve. Research, exhibitions and debates shift the way urban decisions are made, ensuring the city develops in the interests of its citizens. This agenda is practiced by integrating the architecture into a pioneering civic infrastructure of public spaces and a pedestrian bridge, synthesising the organisation with the city. The architectural proposition can be understood as a composition of parts; the ensemble of which becomes a figure of the city at large by representing some of its intrinsic conflict.
Tbilisi City Forum revives the ruinous power station through a reinterpretation of civic architecture, a curation of political processes and a reimagining of the project of the city.