Rehabilitation Center, Nea Malgara, Thessaloniki, Greece
The requested building program is the combination of rehabilitation with independent living units. The original intention of the owner was to create two independent buildings. The proposal of our study and research group was to combine the two functional units composing a single building envelope that will accommodate these two functional cores under one "roof" both conceptually and functionally. This intention was not driven by formalistic or aesthetical preconceptions. This intention was derived by the strong will to express architecturally the unity and the interrelationship between rehabilitation, healing and living.
We believe that these two activities “feed” each other both functionally and conceptually. The goal of a rehabilitation center is to empower people with disabilities or special capabilities in order to be capable of living by their own or together with the social group in which they share care. Moreover integrated living unis supplies the rehabilitation and healing process with valuable experience of everyday life experience. The ultimate goal is the center to operate like a living laboratory.
The form finding process is derived by the intersection and the subtraction of a single primary cubic solid with the boundary of the plot. The last was used like a "cookie cutter".
We imagined a soft pliable mass like dough which is cut and formed by the intersection of the limits of the plot.
The resulting solid is being further manipulated by successive mass subtraction to create open spaces and light permeable surfaces. We imagine a parallel shift of boundaries defining a “bright solid” in which the surfaces of the building in which infiltrate are being dematerialized.
The configuration of the facades is made by creating multiple different sizes of openings that are divided on the surface of the treated original solid following Voronoi formations. The Voronoi formations have been chosen to create a controlled multiplicity negating typically anthropometric data. The openings except the main functional role have also a second on to enhance the unity of the solid from.
There is also another symbolic role. The formations Voronoi shows with geometric way that the same simple rules may produce multiple formal possibilities and a divergent environment like individuals. The simplest form of Voronoi is a rectangular grid.