The commercial center is located in Starigrad, Croatian village, which is popular tourist destination and is a part of the complex development of the resort. The idea of its form, the specificity of an exterior and interior spaces derives from the essence of the commercial center with an utter consideration of the surroundings. The building unites different needs of different people and offers the sequence of functional space blocks. The center is placed on a steep slope, facing the coastline and as the heart of the resort, our concept is an experimental practice of not only simultaneously keeping the natural environment and architecture harmonized with each another, but also emphasizing the obvious contrast and separation between them.
The building imitates the gradual downward development of the landscape and is adjusted to the site boundaries to its maximum capacity. Imitating the environment in such a way provides all the blocks with the sea view, practical use of cross ventilation and sun orientation, while also preventing unnecessary further intervention with the landscape. The form, in contrast from natural curves, is angular and represents the simplified form of the ground and coastline, which creates the visual effect of functional separation between elevated blocks.
Four functional blocks contain working, shopping and gastronomic spaces. Conceptual and functional difference is conveyed by different heights and elevations.
The first floor includes welcoming, open lobby, commercial center, resort’s informational space and technical rooms, where the visitor can get the information, rest, or continue further exploration of the center. Second floor is working area with conference rooms and office spaces, where privacy and working essentials are implemented. Third and fourth levels are more active areas, third one contains the bank, pharmacy and shopping spaces, fourth floor – restaurants and cafes.
The staircase connecting floors is put at the center of the floor plan, so the flow of peoples’ movement between different functional blocks is smooth and harmonious. Considering the climate, locating staircase in that way also strategically creates the path for cross ventilation practice.
For materials, limestone and mass timber were chosen for their multi beneficial qualities. Limestone is an environment-friendly material, which also is natural insulator and flame resistant. While mass timber structures are strong and tight, is six times less than that of concrete and are ideal for surviving earthquakes. Chosen materials ensure economy of building ensembling, while taking eco-friendly aspect into consideration.