‘piraeus tower’ – proposal by marco acerbis the building at sunrise all images courtesy marco acerbis

italian architect marco acerbis has received third prize for the ‘new face of pireus tower’ international competition.

located at the port of piraeus in athens, greece the ‘piraeus tower’ has been abandoned for more than 30 years. it is 22-storeys high standing at 84 metres tall. it is often called ‘the sleeping giant’ due to its abandonment. the challenge for participants of the competition was to gather various architectural ideas that would allow for a distinct facade reformation and the application of new and original material, including the ones from DuPont®, capable of supporting central synthetic ideas for building facades.

marco acerbis: piraeus tower, athens daytime

to provide a new look for the tower marco acerbis thought about the environment and the energy consumption that people would spend climatizing the building. in his proposal he transformed the tower with an intelligent skin composed of a number of colorful umbrellas, protecting the building from the sun. the umbrellas are fixed to a new high performance glass facade and Corian® panels. according to the sun’s position the umbrellas mechanically open or close providing shade to the internal spaces. the sun creates an ever changing facade. at night when all the umbrellas are open and flooded with artificial light, the building continues to be a new city landmark.

marco acerbis: piraeus tower, athens sunset

for the main tower block a facade has been created which is responsive to the climate and is composed of a mixture of high performance glass and corian panels with insulation in front of the slab area. the umbrellas are standardized in size to be the same as the canopy – made of self cleaning fabric like Tyvek®, with a low transparency factor to minimize solar gain during peak time. the two lower blocks where the entrance hall, shops and coffee shop are located do not consist of umbrellas.

marco acerbis: piraeus tower, athens in the evening

for the windows on the ground floor the architects propose glazing to allow for transparency which is necessary for shop activity. for the upper floor they proposed full height corian black panels separated by 30 cm of glass panels to break the solid wall and allow for the external light to come in during the day and for artificial light to flow out at night time.

marco acerbis: piraeus tower, athens the facade umbrellas which expand according to sunlight

marco acerbis: piraeus tower, athens the interior

marco acerbis: piraeus tower, athens the interior

marco acerbis: piraeus tower, athens how the umbrella works on the facade

marco acerbis: piraeus tower, athens floor plan