Centre for Mediterranean Architecture
Hellenic Institute of Architecture awards 2004
Distinction in the public buildings category
The last vaulted ship shed in the Venetian harbour of Chania, the Grand Arsenal, was completed in 1600. In 1872, an upper storey was added that housed the Christian Community school. After the bombardment of 1941, it entered the collective consciousness as the ‘finest ruin in town’.
The architectural proposal respected the image of the ruin as a historical document and proceeded to integrate new structures in a modern architectural style.
The main concept of the intervention is summarised in the introduction of a new wooden bearing structure that is integrated into the series of earlier modifications of the monument: this supports the ruin and organizes the main rooms through circulation around a main foyer that offers views of the various events.