Project Orient Tbilisi – Residential, Office and Commercial Building, Georgia

GMT Real Estate Ltd. Tbilisi, Georgia

Competition 1st prize

Planning period
2007 - 2008

Execution of work stopped after start of construction

Performance phases
2 - 7, General contractor

Planning: Kai Otto, Jessica Brück, Odile Ullrich, Tobias Hübner, Andreas Mrusek, Hanna Stengelin, Silke Koller

Building data
Total cost 44,000,000 €
Gross floor area 40,942 m²

The design concept aimed to offer a symbolic architectural expression of the democratic reorganisation of a free Georgia. This was to be fulfilled by creating a new landmark in the historic part of Tbilisi, on Rustaveli Avenue opposite the Parliament Building. In stark contrast to the historic structures, the architectural concept disregards the stylistic and organisational principles of the neoclassical architecture in the area. The building avoids orthogonality and opens itself through distinctive breaks in the outer shape, establishing new relations to the surrounding streets, as well as the church and park.

Jutting out into and receding away from the streetscape, the façade slopes in various directions. Diversely structured glass elements and colour differentiations enhance the plasticity of the building and reflect the social transformation theme in the façade. The building is a visible symbol of a new democratic attitude of the Georgian people. Small and large passages traverse the building, cumulating in a funnel-shaped courtyard growing wider towards the top and surrounded by three horizontal sections with different uses. Shops, restaurants and cafés are located at street level. On top of these are office floors, followed by floors reserved for private apartments with roof gardens. In the uppermost part of the building, above the actual roof, a restaurant with a terrace offers stunning views across the city.

An atrium-like courtyard with small squares and galleries forms the heart of the building, with balcony gardens of offices and apartments situated above – alternately jutting out and receding spaces that serve both as circulation routes and as places to linger in. A large glass roof over the courtyard permits year-round use, protected from rain, wind and sun, as well as natural ventilation.