An expo center is an important and interesting cultural institution. The exchange of knowledge, science and art is essential to the progress of any society. THE KIP HALLS aim to reinvent the Riga Expo Centre as a new format. The additional building gives a new face towards the old city center and radically changes how guests arrive to an event, interact with each other and wander between the interior and exterior exhibition areas.
The new gesture
The added auditoriums, conference rooms, exhibition space, café and offices are aligned and stretched along the eastern side of the existing complex. Together they form a new facade and entrance situation which provides a more extrovert and communicative first impression and a face towards the old city of Riga.
From one single entrance, all facilities can be reached. A bright and spacious hall gives the visitor an overview of the complex and the various facilities at once. To the right of the entrance all four auditoriums and conference rooms can be spotted, and after the ticket and coat counter, easily be accessed from the ground floor or by ramps and stairs. Straight ahead an exhibition corridor leads to the two existing expo halls. The former entrance is reprogrammed for exhibition and information area with visitor toilets. To the left guests for the management offices can entrance directly into the more private areas.
The subdivision and daylight.
The new addition forms a third volume to the complex that at the same time defines a courtyard for exterior events that are easily reached from the expo halls. THE KIP HALLS is like a lively city within itself, where a day can be spent inside as well as outside in the fresh air. The existing expo halls are designed so artificial light can be controlled. As a contrast to the rather extrovert interior, the new addition is using daylight as a warm welcome when arriving as well as during breaks in the café. In the gaps between the floating auditoriums and the exterior walls, indirect daylight is reflected from above, down to the interior of the auditoriums, the circulation ramps and further below to the café and exhibition space.
The facade is made of local Latvian wood, burned as a sustainable ancient technique to seal and protect it. The auditoriums appear to be floating over the entrance and hall. To emphasize the lightness of the individually colored volumes a layer of polycarbonate is wrapped around the sides creating a glooming appearance. The floor as well as the lower volumes containing conference rooms and offices are made from concrete and stone, as were they a part of the foundation of the Kip island.
- Riga, Latvia