Baghdad Design Centre, Tamayouz Excellence Award, Iraqi architecture, Iraqi buildings, Design concepts, Dubai architects, UAE

Dubai architects including Steven Velegrinis and Islam El Mashtooly submit design concept for Baghdad Design Center

Dubai-based architects including Steven Velegrinis, Islam El Mashtooly, Eslam Salem, Abdelrahman Magdy and Ahmed Salah design a concept for the Baghdad Design Center.

Designed for Tamayouz Excellence Award’s Rifat Chadirji Prize, which prompted architects to create design proposals that would transform Baghdad’s old governorate building into the Baghdad Design Centre, the concept, titled ‘The Cultural Canyon’ was shortlisted for the award and honourably mentioned.

“In our scheme, the buildings take from the form of a cultural canyon – a place where both the sky and enclosure are present,” said the architects. “A place where people inhabit the space in a way that renders them both held and free.”

The proposal’s design of the centre and its landscape are based on a sensitive approach to the city’s cultural landscape. The building’s forms also encourage people to move easily between the centre and the surrounding city, as its port promenade and pedestrian footbridge link the project to its environment.

“This flexible access not only invites the visitors, but also serves as a key cultural space for the community,” said the architects.

They added, “The skyline is composed by independent volumes highlighted by a landmark tower. These geologically inspired fragments contain art exhibition spaces and allow strong integration with outdoor display and event spaces. The vertical sky galleries offer a new perspective over the city of Baghdad by bringing people up to a level where they can see the entire landscape of the city.”