The Background

The Bamiyan region has been a crossroad historically for connecting the Europe to Asia. The prosperous historical heritage has been generated while a variety of cultures and people have come along and mingled for a long time. And yet the Bamiyan valley, the cultural legacies in the region still proves that any event or even conflict is consolidated into the history of Bamiyan. We think any of artefacts cannot cope to the surrounding nature in the Bamiyan valley. Thus we do not want to seek the forms in this context but the concepts and attitudes to develop the project: culture and history, community and sustainability are the concepts that always go together in our understanding of the project. This is the critical lessons we learned which lead us to have the attitude of respect the surrounding nature and legacies. On the demand of a cultural facility in the Bamiyan region to safeguard and archive the cultural heritage we would take it as an opportunity to establish a firm ground for regeneration of culture and local economy. For a long term view we think the designated site should be responsible to the future change and activated as a whole so the integrated communities can grow and respond to the local needs in future.


New Cultural Landscape

The given site boundary is clearly distinct from its northern edge as it rises and forms an isolated plateau overlooking the river Foladi. It has very steep slope so there is no physical access allowed while benefitting the site to gain a total security and a panoramic view to the valley. Thus it gives us freedom to treat the whole site as an integrated communal ground not a single building structure. To do this, there is an intervention of external space introduced in between the internalised areas, such as a courtyard, a colonnade and a terrace. This is how we interpret the site condition and make a strategy of spatial organization in order to maximise the flexibility in use of the building and the future growth. Thus, we propose a building which does not stand out on the ground but is absorbed into it as a part of new landscape respecting the surroundings of Bamiyan Cliff.








Gross floor area:



Bamiyan Cultural Centre


Culture & Education

Competition entry

Bamiyan, Afghanistan


2,300 m2

Notion Architecture

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