GAJ were commissioned by CIFEX World to design a mixed use masterplan in Tripoli, Libya. The brief was to provide a unique and vibrant mixed use destination, where inhabitants could live, work and play. GAJ successfully completed the Concept Design on time and on budget in 2010, however the project was put on hold indefinitely due to the subsequent troubles within the country and the wider region.
This urban design response for a community in Tripoli, is a street architecture of close knit fabric that references the region’s vernacular and colonial-era precedents. Informed by the Mediterranean climate and traditional local response, the environment created is cooled using cross-ventilation drawn from open-air lattice-screened walkways around courtyards and from sheltered sikkas. The narrow, arcaded and pedestrian-friendly street environment links together places of varying size and mood set aside for pause and public life: including a restaurant and recreation edged plaza that has civic proportion and presence. Planar, staggered, limestone-clad walls are articulated with deeply recessed, punched openings that, together with a variegated, wrapping mansard roof of bronze sheet metal, reference desert colours and shape an experiential route of shifting perspectives that funnels visitors through to the plaza