This artificial mountain proposed for the center of Belgrade dubbed “Sciencescape” is the innovative vision of OFF Architecture. OFF entered their proposal for the Center for Promotion of Science Competition, but bad weather delayed their efforts and unfortunately it missed the deadline. While it leaves us to wonder if such a radical melding of mountain and building would be well received, if the recent winning proposal of BIG’s Urban Ski Slope tells us anything, it is that this concept would have bode well amongst the competition. Standing tall, the iconic design by OFF is an immersion of natural elements and the built environment, ready to envelop its visitors.
Also referred to as “Block 39″ the project was designed as a science park and center in the downtown Belgrade, with a program focused on promoting the wonder of nature and science. The design hoped to both inspire visitors and to become the centerpiece of Serbia as the country looks to the future. The mountain concept welcomes visitors and isolates them from the bustle of the city, enveloping them in a more natural environment of fauna and waterfalls similar to an urban island. The exterior of the structure is blanketed in trees and plants.
At the base of the mountain a conference center, theater and planetarium dominate the program, and the mountain is capped with a huge platform extending over the landscape. The cantilevered hall houses ongoing exhibits and interpretive elements that will be enhanced by subtle lighting cues and a breathtaking view of the ancient capital city. A large park will extend the experience with interactive elements throughout. Despite their missed opportunity, OFF Architecture is still very interested in having the proposal become an icon of Belgrade to the world.