New scene of Post Industrial cultures: Scars of Belgrade’s industrial heritage and its reaffirmation

The new cultural scene in Belgrade in a reaffirmed industrial zone with the Biotechnology center as a symbol of post-industrial society.
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Designer(s) : Milica Simić

University : Faculty of Architecture of the University of Belgrade

Tutor(s) : arh. Nebojša Fotirić

Unrecognized values and potential of Belgrade’s industrial heritage initiated the idea for research that would seek the answer to an important question: Are the scars of the industrial heritage worth the regeneration and reaffirmation? While having in mind the new cultural patterns of post-industrial society, this research considers the attitude towards abandoned industrial heritage, as well as possible methods of its revitalization. Being the first industrial area in Belgrade, Dunavska street becomes the main research topic. Its potential of becoming a background for new cultural content has been noted, as it is planned to become a new creative scene of postindustrial society in Belgrade. The locality, in its original state, beholds a vast base of industrial buildings. Some of them stand out due to their cultural and architectural value. Therefore, their presence further seeks the solution for the reconstruction of this district.

Based on the topics examined through the master thesis, a new cultural scene is being designed to reaffirm the existing condition of the location with the new facility – the biotechnology center, which should testify to the development of society, the importance of biology that industrial society did not take into account and the pinnacle of scientific creativity that will not endanger nature but cooperate with it. The object is a symbol of post-industrial society, and it represents the ultimate goal on the path of reaffirming the industrial heritage with new cultural and educational content.

The form of the biotechnology center is related to the context and directly depends on it. Symbolically, it can be compared to a ship that springs from the water, and in that way, the object makes a connection with the Danube. The whole form gradually climbs to height, which enables the creation of a passable roof in the function of a public area and a new gathering place where an ideal view of the reaffirmed industrial zone is provided.

The center should expand and promote the importance of biotechnology and new industries through various workshops, exhibitions, and lectures related to this diverse area, located on the ground floor of the building. The entire first floor was designed as a private zone with laboratories, where new types of materials created from living organisms would be tested, thus contributing to a new revolution in the construction industry. Engineers, in collaboration with biologists and scientists, would help in constructing a new healthy community. This would represent an adequate response of modern post-industrial man to the consequences and scars of the industry. The creation of the before-mentioned facility would raise the level of awareness of the people on current issues such as the level of pollution in Belgrade, lack of cultural facilities, and many others.