Saturday, April 13, 2013

ARCHITECTURE: Wired’s Weekly Picks of Stunning Architecture - Bank of Georgia (nee Soviet Ministry of Roads), Tbilisi, Georgia (


( The Soviets were not known for comfortable or ornamental architecture, and the Bank of Georgia headquarters is neither of those. But despite being a series of massive, stacked concrete blocks (or perhaps, because of that), it is an interesting adaptation of its period's stark, square style.

Built in 1975 as the Soviet Ministry of Roads and sold to the bank in 2007, the Tetris-like structure is actually 18 stories high and 44,000 square feet. Like many examples of constructivist architecture, its blocky, three-dimensional form is almost a variation on an industrial bunker, but re-imagined to allow a forest to grow underneath. Giorgi Chakhava was in the envious position of being both minister of highway construction and architect, and with Zurab Jalaghania, he was able to both follow and expand beyond typical Soviet brutalism.

Photo: Matt Bateman/Flickr

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