The FINANCIAL -- Green Building became double winner of the Architectural Award 2007 organized by Style Magazine and Caparol Georgia.
The annual ceremony presenting 6 nominations included 107 Georgian and foreign architects and designers and a total of 105 registered works and projects which participated in the international competition this year. Green Building was awarded Best Public Construction and also became sole winner of the Grand Prize. The event was held on November 28 at Merab Berdzenishvili International Cultural Centre Muza.
Professional Panel of International Architectural Award 2007 selected the best projects realized or planned within the last 5 years and gave an unbiased evaluation of the level of modern architecture and new trends of developing in this sphere.
“The professional jury named the Green Building- Best Public Building, while the alternative public jury evaluated the latter as Best Architectural Construction. All jury members made the decisions independently and by themselves,” Nino Laghidze, the Editor of Style magazine told The FINANCIAL.
In 2006 Style Magazine initiated the innovative project Architectural Award 2006, aiming at identification of the best architectural works and interior designs, encouraging and promotion of local architects and increasing popularity of architecture and construction. The project continued into 2007, with Style Magazine and Caparol Georgia organizing the international competition Architectural Award 2007.
Repair work-restorations were conducted under projects of the architects Levan Mushkudiani and George Kiknadze.
The teamwork of the two started in their student years. Their first joint project was among the winners at the Cergy-Pontoise Summer University. In 1986 the student architects got 1st garde diplomas for the Best Graduation Work of the USSR in Moscow. Later they received diplomas for the best architectural works in Georgia: TBC Bank Headquarters, Bata Building, Median Amusement Centre. In 2005 the two architects founded the architectural studio Architects.ge.
“The reconstruction works were guided and conducted in a highly-professional way so that the building maintained the exquisite artistic-historical features of 20th Century which it was initially known for. The renovated construction fits in perfectly with the street’s overall architecture,” stated Mushkudiani, founder of Architects.ge.
Green Building - the best class A office estate in Tbilisi. The building standards, high quality materials used-elevators, the windows, and door frames, were imported from Turkey and France. The same people, the international project team in charge of the construction of the U.S Embassy, were involved in this project.
“The Green Building has retained its initial image which was lost during Communist times. We dealt with a huge responsibility with this project as the building is a cultural heritage,” stated Mushkudiani.
Restoration of the Green Building was carried out by the New Construction Company (NCC), the same firm which was responsible for the renovation of the former department store building which now houses the TBC Bank offices.
“The Green Building is the best mixture of old and new architectural traditions. The two buildings separated by a modern glass atrium are in the first place completely independent constructions but on the other hand, the very modern glass atrium conveys that alternate implication of what’s called a refreshed perfection of the past,” said Mushkudiani.
Acclaimed architect Bruno Taut said, “If we want our culture to rise to a higher level, we are obligated for better or for worse, to change our architecture. And this only becomes possible if we take away the closed character from the rooms in which we live. We can only do that by introducing glass architecture, which lets in the light of the sun, the moon, and the stars.”
The Green Building was constructed during the years from 1902 to 1907. The building fell in to disrepair under the Soviet regime. It was constructed by the architect Leopold Bilfeldom and belonged to the daughter of the vice-consul of Sweden in the Caucasian region Evfrosinii Martinovskoj.
The total value of the investments provided in the acquisition and renovation of the Green Building is USD 5 million. The annual leasing prices vary from USD 300 to USD 360 1-sq/m. excluding Value Added Tax (VAT).
Today the Green Building, representing greater historical and architectural value in the centre of Tbilisi, is completely restored.
The idea about restoration of a historical building belongs to the company GRDC which got the property in 2005.
GRDC is a leading real estate and development company with operations in the Republic of Georgia. The company invests in and develops office, retail, resort and prime residential properties.
“GRDC intended to make Marjanishvili St a business centre of the capital and hence the Green Building- an international standard office estate. The renovation works were finished in the shortest time possible- 11 months,” Irakli Kilauridze, Georgian Reconstruction & Development Company (GRDC) General Director, told The FINANCIAL.
During the 3 months of its exploitation, GRDC officials claim their expectations have come true as the building’s tenants include such well-known companies as the EBRD, and Borjomi.
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) was the first tenant of the building having a regional Head Office moved into the new location- the new major business centre on the left bank of the river Mtkvari. On March 15, 2007, GRDC signed a 5-year contract with the EBRD in the frame of the Green Building office estate-leasing project, part of the Tbilisi City initiative.
“GRDC’s involvement in the Green Building project was mainly conditioned by the location factor. A beautiful historical building situated in the heart of the city sounded a valuable proposal for us. That’s how GRDC got down to business with a primary intention of making the building an international standard office estate that would itself serve a solid financial benefit for the company,” said Kilauridze.