The COAF Smart Center designed by Paul Kaloustian Architects is a pioneering model for delivering superior and regionally-relevant educational, social, economic and community programs in rural areas with an emphasis on technology, sustainability, arts, music, modern healthcare and lifestyle, linguistics and languages, business and civic engagement.
COAF Smart Center technical information
- Architects: Paul Kaloustian
- Typology : Cultural Architecture / Cultural Center
- Location: Lori Province – Armenia
- Completion year: 2017
- Images: © Courtesy of Paul Kaloustian
The design focuses on architecture and its relation with nature enabling a different view of architecture and the void. The landscape becomes the heart of the project while program is arranged around it enabling a new reading of the built environment as a new nature.
– Paul Kaloustian
COAF Smart Center Photographs
COAF Smart Center Description
Operating as a state of the art, scalable learning and knowledge exchange hub, SMART will implement COAF programs based on models that have charted success in 22 villages in the Armavir and Aragatsotn regions of Armenia over the past decade.
The SMART concept will allow scalability throughout rural regions. Smart campuses will respect the integrity of rural aesthetics in sync with modern architectural design, maintaining the authenticity of the region, while encouraging progressive ideology. Each campus will utilize sustainable and green design, off the grid components and renewable energy.
The currently under-construction Smart Center building is located in the north Armenian province of Lori. The structure’s organic form embraces the landscape by creating a sinuous ribbon-like walkway creating a 7000 m2 courtyard. The one-story building is spread horizontally while following the topography of the site.
The Smart Center accommodates a world-class from global influencers throughout interconnected virtual classrooms, meeting areas, computer labs for student and youth clubs, an auditorium for performances and presentations, a library and studios for languages, arts and music, and a restaurant.
Also, it can accommodate program participants and visiting collaborators in guest quarters and will feature outdoor activities, indoor workshops and vibrant greenhouses to train and enable developing children and adult villagers alike in regionally relevant skills.
The architecture establishes a new approach regarding landscape and nature, it tries to engage with the scale of the landscape by creating a form that embraces the surroundings and creating ambiguity as it creates an environment more than a building.
The design focuses on architecture and its relation with nature enabling a different view of architecture and the void. The landscape becomes the heart of the project while the program is arranged around it enabling a new reading of the built environment as a new nature.
COAF Smart Center Plans
COAF Smart Center Gallery
Children Of Armenia Fund (COAF) is a non-profit, non-governmental 501(c) (3) organization. COAF uses community-led approaches to reduce rural poverty, with a particular focus on youth. Since the inception of its programs in 2004, COAF has funded and implemented educational, healthcare, community and economic development programs serving more than 28.000 people in rural villages of Armenia.
In 2015, COAF debuted SMART, an unprecedented model for delivering superior and regionally relevant holistic educational programs in rural areas with an emphasis on technology, sustainability, the arts, health, linguistics, business, and civic engagement.
Learn more at www.coafkids.org
About PAUL KALOUSTIAN
Paul Kaloustian Studio is a Beirut based Architecture and Design practice working on projects ranging from buildings to interiors. He received his Masters at Harvard Graduate School of Design and worked at Herzog and de Meuron in Basel, Switzerland before starting his practice in 2002. Paul has taught at the Boston Architecture Center (2000) and at the American University of Beirut (2009-10).
He received the Moukbel Award and the Order of Engineers and Architects Award. His project “House in a Forest” was exhibited at the 13th Venice Biennale, the Institut du Monde Arabe in Paris and London in the exhibition “Atlas of the Unbuilt World”