TORON CASTLE AWAKEN

  • YEAR : 2019
  • LOCATION : TEBNINE, LEBANON
  • DESIGN : Maryaim Yehya
  • VISUALIZATION :
  • LANDSCAPE : Maryaim Yehya

TORON CASTLE AWAKEN


The Toron Castle acts as a focal point in Tebnine. It is located on a higher landform compared to its surrounding. The eye is drawn by its contrast with lower-lying topography. At specific points, the castle is seen powerful and it inspires movement towardss it. As the Toron Castle becomes part of the cultural landscape of Tebnine, it is important to highlight its history. A town square is composed of a multitude of disconnected spaces; which are now connected, hosting users that participate in, enjoy and understand the archeology and the local history around them. The castle acts as a destination formed at the very end of a journey. Its hilly topography has given it a unique character to overlook different views yet it cannot be seen from any point. Here, we can highlight the importance of the place of arrival, for it acts as a threshold. Other than the fact that at this specific point; which is the road, the castle is strongly seen, an area right beside it is created for people to rest, adventure, contemplate and enjoy two opposing views; one of which is the castle while the other is a tremendous wide view of the surrounding villages. The area is surrounded with residential houses and the castle is not visible when standing in its middle. Therefore, a metallic structure is meandering upwards for the users to enjoy both beautiful views whether at the peaks of this structure or between the vegetation suggested below the structure. There, they can pose for photographs and enjoy the breeze sitting or standing. The vegetation here acts upon what the view is calling. Moving up the path, where the Friday market takes place usually happens, roofed structures are designed to provide shade during the market (act as kiosks) as well as shade during the rest of the week. These are situated in front of an amphitheater which creates positive social environments that are adopted by people for sitting, eating and drinking, as well as enabling access to the space they’re going to be introduced to. Users can enjoy a meal whether from the market or during lunch break on this amphitheater and can enjoy the calm mountainous view in front of them or the castle behind them. Vertical structures are introduced to provide shade at certain points, as well as replicate the vertical elements that already exist in the castle. At the end of the amphitheater and right in front of the mosque, a meandered platform is designed to screen this public space from the noise it could be producing which would disturb prayers. The curvilinear lines continue to reach the municipality building where it provides a continuation of the paths as well as structured bollards that are then transformed into street furniture to serve the users. Moving upwards through the path towards the castle, the users are found in an edged wide area called “Sahat Ali”. This “Saha” hosts different food restaurants. Since edges are potentially vibrant social environments, it transforms the site into a public space that would help people frequently to choose to sit in, wait at or occupy its edges rather than positioning themselves more centrally. This part of the “Saha” will host community tables and chairs that arise from the ground to form those tables, as well as root out from the stoned walls to provide seating areas and tables. Hedges and shrubs are suggested to be planted to provide human-scale edge structures where indented and alcove forms are used to encourage sitting and sheltering uses. Those masses of shrubs can allow people to sit among the scent, colour and texture of plants with the least amount of noise possible to the neighboring houses. While walking towards the castle, a welcoming area of invading structures will be created for people to . In the castle, they’ll be able to enjoy the panoramic views of the surrounding villages, as well as spot the amphitheater and the water features and understand the visual links they serve to the castle. The area to focus on in the castle is the roof. This is due to the fact that it is the most active space already, as well as the idea of people not being able to enjoy the scenery around them for more than 3-5 minutes.  Small spaces are created to be adopted by small groups to emphasize the panoramic views, enjoy the wind, have a space for reading and a window/frame to highlight a photographic scenery.