Page D2.1 . 28 July 2010                     
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    Urbanisms / Turkey

    by Steven Holl

    In Akbuk, Turkey, overlooking the Aegean Sea, a new eco-reserve of small town fragments, like islands in a preserved landscape of cultivated natural vegetation, will be characterized by advanced technologies in sustainability, while also anchored in the poetic reverie of this ancient site. The nearby ancient Greek town of Miletus inspires a compact gridded plan.

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    In the Akbuk Peninsula master plan by Steven Holl Architects, three dense-pack "islands" are strategically located in relation to the site's topography, maximizing the natural landscape and minimizing roads, surface parking, and infrastructure: under the ground, a spa and townhouses cut into the earth; in the ground, courtyard villas with pools; and over the ground, a dense-pack precinct with apartments around courtyards on a platform over a parking and cistern level below.

    This main urban "island" has a special assembly space shaped by three solstice spiral skylights. Courtyard houses in two-story-high dense-pack construction in white concrete (mixed with local stone) have solar shades of Turkish chestnut, prefabricated in North Turkey by local craftsmen continuing ancient woodworking traditions.

    With optimized solar shading, natural ventilation, thermal rock storage, and thermal mass construction, a seawater radiant-slab system supplies all heating and cooling. Solar water heating and gray- and storm-water recycling via ponds and cisterns further minimize the ecological footprint.   >>>

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    This article is excerpted from Urbanisms: Working with Doubt by Steven Holl, copyright © 2009, with permission of the publisher, Princeton Architectural Press.



    ArchWeek Image

    A full-scale site facade mockup at the Akbuk Peninsula Dense Pack, using white concrete walls and a gridded sun screen of Turkish chestnut.
    Photo: Courtesy Steven Holl Architects Extra Large Image

    ArchWeek Image

    Each of the three skylights of the Akbuk assembly hall is designed to admit light directly into the assembly chamber for a different seasonal event: the summer solstice, the winter solstice, and both equinoxes.
    Photo: Courtesy Steven Holl Architects Extra Large Image


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