Working in ALN, Landshut.
ALN | ARCHITEKTURBÜRO LEINHÄUPL + NEUBER
Prof. Arch. Peter T. Lang
THE HUB OF MEDITERRANEAN TASTE.
A cultural centre on the promotion of wine and food
The idea of the project is to use the League of writers as a center for the promotion of the Albanian and Mediterranean wine&food culture inside the city of Tirana.
The aim is to realize a structure capable to be an international point of reference about feeding culture, agriculture and sustainable development.
What happens inside?
The building will host different functions inside, some of these will be temporary, others permanent:
– A bookshop on wine and food culture, both Albanese and Mediterranean, professional and traditional tools for cooking, biological and local products;
– A multifunctional hall capable to host meetings and debates about food and wine culture, about food production and sustainable agriculture;
– A school oriented on traditional food, with classrooms equipped to host courses and workshops;
– An administrative area to manage and organize all the different activities.
Who use this building?
This space is open to all the citizens of Tirana interested to learn and develop a culture related to the world of taste and flavor. The Hub is open to professionals in this field who wants to participate to an extended net related to the excellence of food tradition in Albania and in the Mediterranean countries; to tourists who are curious to know and taste the local food culture and its specialties; to producers who want to spread their products and show their specific qualities; to people who want to learn cooking following local traditions or experimenting other kind of cuisine; to chefs who want to share their experiences and knowledge.
How it relates to the city of Tirana?
The new “Hub” is a public building that will offer services to the city. It will be accessible and open for daily activities, weekly meetings, or monthly events.
Thanks to the presence of the courtyard, cafe on the ground floor, in the space of the portico, will also be a place of exchange and a daily meeting point.
The new “Hub” will be for the city of Tirana a benchmark for the gastronomic culture, to promote it and for its spread.
What is its economic sustainability?
The economic balance works on the possibility of a synergy between funding and revenue from activities.
Everything must necessarily start from public funding. This initial expense is necessary for the re-functioning and the retrofitting of the structure.
Once the structure is activated a series of collaborations with private and entrepreneurial can be triggered. This will be necessary for the management and supply of services, such as coffee, shop, school with several courses and the management of multifunctional space.
These activities can become the economic engine around which the whole system of events and cultural offerings.
So the “Hub” will gain from the activities of services and sale and will invest in the promotion and protection of local food culture.
The idea is to reach an ideal level of self-management, where the income produced by the services can ensure a program of cultural activities for the city.
Who are the players involved?
The actors involved in the building are related to the activities inside:
– The space of the cafe on the ground floor in the glazed porch, will be an open and accessible space that can take advantage of the outdoor space.
– The shop, also in the groundfloor and directly accessible from the outside, will be a sales and distribution activity, which will focus: on journalism with the sale of books and magazines specializing in the world of gastronomy; on the sale of professional equipment linked to the world of cooking; on the sale of traditional instruments and handicrafts which are linked to tourism; on the sale of specific products of local food production.
– The multi-function room is definitely the most important and public space inside the building. This is the heart of the general “Hub” and is its cultural engine. Within this space it is possible to organize events, presentations, debates, conferences, parties, gala dinners, wine tasting, presentation of local products, in general, all activities related to the promotion and popularization of wine and gastronomic Albanian culture and the relations with its territory.
– The cooking school is another crucial activity for the dissemination and protection of culture and local culinary traditions. This will then turn to an audience as large as possible; from professional chefs willing to learn some traditional techniques; to amateurs who want to grapple with the world of the kitchen; children as a way to approach the world of tradition and to proper nutrition; to old ladies who want to rediscover their family traditions.
The role of the cooking school is the dissemination and awareness of the local gastronomic culture.
The cultural quartet: Made in Albania
For the general strategy of the “Cultural quartet”, our hypothesis is to work on the theme of “Made in Albania”, exploiting the four buildings in an original way to promote the excellence and tradition of the Albanian culture.
The idea is also to promote a network of exchanges with other countries bordering the Mediterranean. In this sense, the attempt is to try to understand what are the qualities that can be shared to build a network of exchange.
Somehow the four buildings are to become Hubs, places for cultural exchange to trigger a broad network of relationships and dynamics.
So the Museum will tell the history and artistic culture, the “League of Writers” will promote food and wine culture, “Villa 31” will present the memory of political history, and “Palace of Brigades” will promote the artisan culture.
In these sense the four buildings are not just important in the city but they can become benchmarks to exchange different culture, with the richness of several traditions, with an international context.
Client: Government of Albania
Location: Tirana, AL
Year: December 2015
Scale: 1025 sqm