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    Zaha Hadid designs geometric concrete research hub for Isaam Fares Institute

    Zaha Hadid has completed a top-heavy concrete building for the Isaam Fares Institute, located at the American University of Beirut in Lebanon.

    The 3,000-square-metre building, which serves as a hub for academics, researchers, and politicians studying public policy and international affairs, has been lifted half of the ground and cantilevered over a public courtyard and a series of elevated pathways.

    The in-situ concrete exterior is patterned with four-sided geometric shapes, many of which function as windows.

    A large skylight delivers daylight to the building’s interior, while a screened terrace offers a break-out space for staff and students on the roof.

    A seven-metre change of level across the site creates entrances on three separate floors, with a long ramp leading to the second floor on the west side.

    The upper levels contain seminar spaces, offices, and a large reading room; the lower levels an administrative program and meeting areas, while a sunken level hidden below the building houses a 100-seat auditorium. 

    Image: Hufton + Crow

    Image: Hufton + Crow

    Image: Hufton + Crow

    Image: Luke Hayes 

    Courtesy Dezeen and Zaha Hadid Architects

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