CHYBIK + KRISTOF (CHK) present the winning design for a new multifunctional tower, set to become a landmark in the capital of Albania, Tirana, with its recognizable cascading silhouette wrapped in red concrete.
Located at the heart of the forthcoming Culture Hub of the capital within the New Boulevard, the multifunctional complex is envisioned as an 83-meter tower, consisting majorly of residential spaces while the first three floors are dedicated to offices and retail, all the while becoming a significant addition to Tirana’s ever-growing skyline.
Over the past decade, the Albanian capital has been booming into a modern and dynamic city, following its mission to invest in infrastructure and high-quality spaces, improving the eminence of life for its residents alongside becoming an attractive point in the Balkans. Underlining the city’s active leadership efforts to elevate Tirana’s urbanism, many international offices are contributing to this important development, including CHK.
As a part of this reactivation and redesign of the city, particularly establishing the cultural importance of the upcoming area, CHK’s winning design is a central connector in the urban masterplan, bringing together the entire district of the upcoming Cultural Hub, consequently forming a vibrant public space for the locals. the dynamic landscape of Tirana via the New Boulevard.
The tower, positioned strategically at the heart of the future Cultural Hub, serves as the urban connector, weaving together the district’s upcoming key cultural buildings such as the opera house, art gallery, cultural center with the Boulevard, and the River Park, into a vibrant and cohesive public area. The cascading scheme of the tower, a rectangular structure situated on a prominent corner of the area, marks it as a pivotal orientation point for the entire neighborhood.
The significance of the tower extends beyond its design, as it combines old and new elements, defining a new urbanity at a crucial scale for Tirana. Located at the end of the New Boulevard, this structure is set to be one of the first realized buildings of the new masterplan, bringing balance to the end of the Boulevard in close proximity to the River Park. This integration connects the Boulevard with nature, adding an essential element to the overall urban landscape of Tirana.
The main driver of the architectural form of the tower is the quality of the residential areas, the apartments that build up to 80 percent of the building. The cascading façade forms green roof terraces for several apartments on each floor, extending the greenery of the surrounding urban context by retaining rainwater to mitigate the heat island effect and irrigate vegetation. Supporting the optimal environmental goals, CHK introduces a climate-specific living approach to the residential block by creating passive shaded loggias full of greenery, as a viable response to the local subtropical Mediterranean climate.
The passive, shaded loggias are built in every apartment with aluminum window frames, bringing optimal thermal coverage to the entirety of the apartment, protecting the interior from overheating, providing only the main source of daylight, and framing the unique views of the Skanderbeg Mountain Range in the distance.
Frida Pashako, General Director of Urban Planning and Development at the Municipality of Tirana, explains: ‘The winning project for the multifunctional tower at the New Boulevard of Tirana marks a milestone in our city’s architectural landscape, as it is a result of the first private international competition amongst nearly 20 future competitions in this particular area. This project showcases an extraordinary fusion of innovative design and visionary urban planning.
The proposal stands out by its thoughtful consideration of the street articulation/corner of the project, integrating with the urban fabric while establishing an inviting and dynamic connection. It shows an appreciation for the site’s context and the rapid development unfolding around it. One of the key highlights is its ability to establish a cohesive relationship between diverse functions within the tower and with the public spaces around it.
Image © CHYBIK + KRISTOF
The clever distribution of spaces fosters a synergy that intertwines various functionalities, creating an environment that is not only functional but also aesthetically pleasing. This project aspires to contribute to the emergence of a new identity within the informal urban context, shaping a future that accommodates the rapid pace of development. I am certain that this building will aid in creating spaces that inspire and evolve with the cityscape.
We are eager to witness the tangible impact it will have on our city’s skyline and the lives of its inhabitants. We thank CHYBIK+KRISTOF for bringing their international expertise and experience to Tirana.’ Setting a pioneering example of collaboration between the private and public sectors, the project marks the first pilot exemplary international competition for privately owned land and a private investor with the active participation of the city of Tirana and international architectural offices. Source by CHYBIK + KRISTOF.
Location: Tirana, Albania
Architect: CHYBIK + KRISTOF
Lead Architect: Ondrej Chybik, Michal Kristof
Design team: Jiri Vala, Jiri Richter, Radek Satora, Ondrej Svancara, Ondrej Mundl, Ilya Lebedev, Lukas Kvasnica, Martyna Bobinska, Magdalena Czopka, Antonin Hampl, Martin Holy, Martin Iglesias
Landscape Architect: MARKO & THE PLACEMAKERS
Local Consultant: STUDIOARCH4
Sustainable Design Specialist: CLEARLY EFFICIENT
Structural Engineer: SDS Group shpk, BOLLINGER + GROHMANN
Collaboration: Marko&Placemakers, CLEARLY EFFICIENT, Studioarch4, SDS Group shpk,
Investors: 2T SHPK, BE-IS SHPK
Tower height: 83,7 m
Size: 17 500 m2
Investment: 11 375 000 EUR