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AMZEI SQUARE

The only place in the Amzei marketplace that does not function is Amzei marketplace itself. From the beginning, this area has been dedicated to trading – on the one hand, due to its evolution on an old maidan in the proximity of the church, and, on the other, because it lay near the main artery that crosses Bucharest from north to south (Podul Mogosoaiei, today Victoria Avenue).

In their intention to modernize the marketplace, the two interventions (the modernist building implanted in the center of the square from the 30s and the new shed with the underground market area built in 2013) have managed to ”annihilate” the traditional marketplace and turn it rather into a general store, which the sellers could not adapt to. Therefore, all the commercial activity takes place today in the residual spaces nearby the road, the center remaining unused.

We believe that the attempt to organize excessively the way the marketplace works, by artificially defining a place of unprogrammed and spontaneous trade, was harmful. Architecture should be a non-hierarchized background that allows the marketplace to function after its own rules.

Our proposal aims to bring the circulations and the commercial activity to the street level and rechannel them towards the center of the marketplace, so that it becomes once again a crisscrossed permeable space. This way, the modernist building would lose its interior partitions, opening itself to the surrounding plaza). To each side of the historical building we designed two lightweight structures that push further the market into the street and turn the interior courtyard into a public one. In the same spirit, the market area in the 2013 extension is brought to the ground level through a curved slab that covers the underground courtyard below, as well as through a glass slab over the central opening of the market hall. Here, as well, the marketplace area is extended towards the core of the plaza by way of a lightweight structure.

TEAM:  Diana Valentina Bogdan, Laura Maria Covaci, Teodora Maria Cristache