noura al sayeh + leopold banchini of bahraini practice a-bureau have completed ‘bab al bahrain pavilion’, a temporary structure within one of the few public squares of bahrain. recently the site has developed more towards a large intersection for the car rather than a pedestrian plaza for its citizens, but under modified conditions, the centralized and historic area contains the potential for a lively urban space. covering the entire square to generate a sense of place, a roof structure of sheer fabric transforms into a shared environment, hosting lectures, movie screenings, public interviews and workshops. traffic is heavily reduced, returning the area back to the people for gatherings and activities.

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
aerial view of the covered public square
image © camille zakharia | all images courtesy of a-bureau

 

 

large tables and furniture are scattered throughout the pavilion for exhibitions, meetings, games and picnics. the light translucent material changes the climatic conditions with a silver reflective thermal screening on the top surface, mimicking the low technology method used in greenhouses. the existing fountain’s evaporation process cools the micro-climate creating an inviting oasis.

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
palm trees extend beyond the roof structure
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
palm trees intersect the fabric and continue through the roof plane
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
translucent fabric
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
view of the roof plane and surrounding urban development
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
detail of roof supports
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
existing fountain creates micro-climate
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
people freely walk within the once heavily-used streets
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
tables for displays
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
tables for displays
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
exhibit for architectural models
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
tables for picnics
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
aerial view
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
fewer cars pass through the square than before
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
lively gathering at night
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
gathering at night
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
at night
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
lecture held within the dark space
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
installation of the fabric
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
mobile planter
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
fabrication of urban furniture
image © camille zakharia

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
site plan

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
section

noura al sayeh + leopold banchini: bab al bahrain pavilion
section

 

 

project info:

 

organizer: manama capital of arab culture 2012, ministry of culture, kingdom of bahrain
architect: noura al sayeh & leopold banchini
exhibition design: noura al sayeh & leopold banchini
construction: syed m. ahmed, masy int.
creative wrought iron factory
bu hussain aluminium and mirrors
photography: eman ali