Center for Peace and Religious Studies. Rome, Italy
This project, entitled “Web of Peace,” is a manifestation of context and site, which playful contrast with traditional Italian typologies to yield a space exemplary of the Roman palazzo-piazza typologies with a contemporary and contextual twist. Across the Via Claudia sits the ruin of an old nymphaeum wall (a fountain wall at the end of an aquaduct). This seven-meter-high wall creates an imposing directional axis within the site, directing the view along it to the Colosseum at its terminus. By using a substantial wall of latticework to balance the two sides of the street, the project references the imposing Temple of the Deified Claudis that once stood across the road.
This web of latticework wraps a majority or the western and northern facades and defines a protected piazza which acts as a large loggia. This loggia contains entrances to the auditorium at the southern end, and has a storfront level running parallel to the Via Claudia. Above the cafe, restaurant and bookshop hang a series of isolated reading and contemplation spaces, each of which is connected to its respective main floor with a suspended walkway. The roof terrace is easily accessable from the exterior stair that winds its way through the building, ending in a spectacular view of the colosseum.