Barbar Temple Visitor CenterEdit profile
Barbar Temple Visitor Center The Barbar Temples are among the most remarkable architectural survivals of the ancient world, without parallel in the region. This archaeological site, located in the North-western village of Barbar in Bahrain, is considered to be part of the Ancient Dilmun culture. In order to Preserve, Promote and Project this Important Archeological Site, a sensitive architectural intervention on site is needed. The “Barbar Temple Visitor Centre` which we propose embodies Four Dimensions: 1- The Contextual Dimension 2- The Historical Dimension 3- The Compositional Dimension 4- The Sustainable Dimension 1- The Contextual Dimension The Temple occupies the central area between two accessible plots: The Western plot and the Eastern plot. While from the west, an immediate discovery of the temple is experienced from the street without a need to approach to the site, a gradual discovery of the temple is experienced from the eastern street. In addition, the western plot is flat and empty, while the eastern plot is hilly and planted. As a conclusion, the Eastern site provides bigger potential for the Architectural intervention. 2- The Historical Dimension According to History and Archeology books, Barbar Temple was dedicated to "Enki", the God of the sweet subterranean waters: “The most notable feature …was the Sacred Well…the “Apsu` of Enki. A long staircase that led to it from the temple were incorporated .` As a conclusion, the Water Well has (as it were originally) to be a dominant and the catalyst for any architectural intervention on site. 3- The Compositional Dimension The Barbar Temple is actually three temples, one succeeding the other on the same site: In harmony with this growth cycle, we conclude that the geometrical composition of new intervention has to take over and close this cyclical growth in dimension. - The earliest temple was built on a trapezoidal platform approximately 24 m long and 15 m wide - The second temple was an enlargement of the first, built 500 years later, slightly bigger in dimensions (26m, 24.5m, 27m, 25m) to embody a perfect square of 40m by 40m - The third temple, added between 2100BC and 2000 BC, reached an almost perfect square shape, measuring 38m by 38m In harmony with this growth cycle, we conclude that the new intervention has to take over and close this cyclical growth in dimension to embody a perfect square of 40m by 40m. 4- The Sustainable Dimension The Barbar Temple is an archeological site where most of its architectural elements are "sculpted" in the ground, therefore not visible above the ground level. A new visible above ground intervention will overshadow the existing archeological site and spoil the landscape; while a discreet underground/topographical intervention will keep the primacy of the Temple, and enhance the landscape. Therefore, and in order to protect the individuality of the archeological site,we conclude that the new intervention has to merge with the ground, becoming part of the landscape.