2011 / BELGRADE / RS



The area is a composition of unique natural elements and historically important sites. The Kalemegdan park and the hill, greenery along the river that stretches toward Brankov bridge and the river itself are the natural elements that enjoy presence of the oldest Belgrade settlement “Belgrade fortress” and the historically important Kosancicev Venac block in the backround and the only preserved built evidence of a century long port activity „Beton Hala” in the foreground.

Highly Sensitive characteristics of the area requires the site to be a built landscape that stitches individual existing natural elements on the site together rather than a stranger object. To find the answer one does not need to go far from the site. The solution lies in between topographical lines of the hill and traditions along the river.

With a playful modification of topographical lines, the hill shall melt down toward the river, cover the road, drag down the tram lines on it’s hip and create a smooth slope.A cut in this slope creates a stream where the moving mass of people and commercial units become part of the nature and individually like drops of water they react to the rhythm of the flow and flow to the direction of gravity. The physical gravity of earth and sensual gravity of river as a strong magnet drags down people as they pass by variety of different surfaces of terraces which are designed for different urban activities while they can fully enjoy the spectacular view.

Rivers have always had determinative importance in formation of cultures and ships have always been main actor on the river stage. Belgrade is not an exceptional case. Ships have always been present here through industrial activities of the port until present time. They are an indispensable element of the whole composition. Placing the exhibition and conference centre on a ship in front of Beton hala will be a reminder of a century long port activity and role of Beton hala in the past and gives unique and endless options for mobility and flexibility. Beton Hala waterfront centre should take advantage of being in close vicinity of confluence of Sava and Danube and may use it as a gate toward national and international destinations.

-General concept of the architectural design of the Beton hala Waterfront centre

The „Beton hala” named converted barge is docking on the axis of „the cut” and is the end point of people’s flow where they finally meet the river. It consists of six barges of 15*50 meter. Barge is used as a base where another level is added on it. This modular system provides maximum flexibility which is vital for an exhibition and conference centre. It can be built in phases and possibilities of extension or modifications are endless. Mobility of the system indicates that a tow-boat can tow a part or the whole centre to other place temporarily. As Serbia is on runway to join European community, the Beton hala barge can play a promotional role.