Baharash was selected as a finalist to design an iconic arts centre/ opera house, within the Thames Gateway, which will serve as a visual landmark to the world’s most exciting, vibrant and culturally diverse city, London.
The international competition attracted over 1000 entries from over 120 countries in the world.
The judges, comprised by world-renowned architects, felt it was “a serious piece of architecture – an intervention that, critically, relates to both the land and the water”.
The site for this project is home to a range of habitats & wildlife that are specially-adapted to exist there. To minimise any damage or disruption to this sensitive eco system, Baharash decided on a bold approach to create the majority of the opera house as a floating structure that could be constructed offsite, and transported by sea to anchor in its location.
Flooding is also one of the main problems of the area today and even worse for the future. Due to this it was a pragmatic solution for the Thames Opera House to work with the natural forces of the site, such as the tidal system.
Ultimately the opera house is in constant dialogue between the land and water, celebrating and enhancing the identity of the place.
The many different types of sea creatures which live on site gave inspiration to the shape. To strengthen the buildings seashell-like character and to give it more of a creature-like feel, Baharash studied various sea shell surfaces and openings to influence the openings of the opera house. The building is very expressive about the beauty of its context. Ultimately the aim was to create an organic & dynamic shape that could give harmony to a sensitive site, while transforming the place into an iconic destination.
The project was recently exhibited by ACO in their main exhibition stand at the exhibition BAU – Germany’s leading construction exhibition!
Line Of Site
What we did
Concept Design – International Design Competition