zaitoona · túnez
Sports City comes out of one of those agreements in which a promoter obtains strategic land in depressed or developing areas – which means they are more than suitable for construction – in exchange for full financing for sport facilities that will economically boost the place. A kind of gift to the city, so to speak. The promotion of these sport centers is carried out through commercial agreements with sports celebrities.
Boukhatir, Dubai’s concrete main supplier and also promoter of Sports City –between Tunisia and Carthage – had the underlying idea of taking advantage of the urbanization by building houses around the golf course, the stadium, the pavilion and the sports pool.
The thing is, there are neither many condomimiums in Tunisia, nor enough data to make a real forecast of how many apartments and what terrains should be used for each apartment block.
Boukhatir Group announced a restricted competition for four European architecture studios for each section of the developable area. They already had Joaquín Pujol’s masterplan (he had worked with Jaime Romano) for the sports facilities, located next to a lake.
Romano Arquitectos won the Zaitoona competition. Their approach integrated four big solutions. In the first place, we devised a very sophisticated scheme, a kind of three cores-based tetris that would allow to have different combinations of apartments and different surfaces on each floor, depending on the demand. It would have a load bearing structure and vertical accesses through lifts and stairs.
The energetic strategy relied on a cogeneration approach: gas, which is quite affordable in Tunisia, would generate the electricity for the entire system. The energetic surplus would be enough to cover the sanitary water heating and the air conditioning. For strategic reasons, we were finally commissioned with the Cedar sector, just next to Zaitoona’s.
Miguel Angel Sanchez
Alessandro – Promoter
First Prize at Zaitoona contest