Yaşamkent Commercial Centre – A New Center of Ankara Inspired by Historical Grand Bazaar Culture

Project: Yaşamkent Commercial Centre
Architects: Aura Design Studio
Location: Ankara, Turkey
Area: 80,729 sf
Year: 2022
Photographs by: Courtesy of Aura Design Studio

Yaşamkent Commercial Centre by Aura Design Studio

Inspired by the culture of the historical grand bazaar, Aura Design Studio aimed to bring together students, local people and shoppers as much as possible in a central courtyard, by directing people to the Yasamkent Commercial Centre from different points and multiple entrances.

Located in Ankara, Yasamkent Commercial Centre was designed by Aura Design Studio, led by Filiz Cingi Yurdakul. Grand Bazaar culture comes to the fore in the idea of starting the project. In this day and age, bazaars serve as important gathering spaces in any major city, and both interact with their surroundings through the perception of physical structure and in doing so transform their environs. Often located at and spilling over major street junctions, cater to local circulation and offer a place for people to eat, drink, and relax. This historical and cultural context were the most important starting points that shaped the concept design project of Aura Design Studio.

Since Ottoman times, bazaars in Turkey have allowed people chance to mingle and shop for necessities. They are etched into the minds of most as covered streets. They maintain both a commercial and public function, and are more often than not the architectural equivalent of shopping malls. Closed bazaars remained relatively popular until recently. Alas, as they are often located right at the centre of Turkish cities and townships, they often are incapable of responding to modern urban needs. The pandemic has only exacerbated that.

Yasamkent Commercial Centre is located right in the heart of Ankara’s Çayyolu neighbourhood in Çankaya, amid rows of apartments, villas, and a central mosque. To bring the best of the site’s potential out, the architects designed the centre in such a way that would allow locals, students, and shoppers alike to interact with one another as much as possible. Aura Design Studio was also intended to accentuate the district’s dynamism via a multi-elevation courtyard complete with multiple entrances that lead usher people in from different directions and access points. Everything about the site is open concept the commercial venues, a public square, an entertainment corner in an attempt to make the centre as flexible as possible across time.

Yasamkent Commercial Centre eaves are meant to legible in the urban fabric, as well as to provide mass integrity. The brise-soleils open into terraces along the inner pathways, and extend over an open amphitheatre, thereby creating a unique architectural language. Furthermore, its flexible circulation development threads all of the units together trade and shopping alike, thereby ensuring maximum interaction between them. The central courtyard has the potential to create a social atmosphere for the surrounding residential fabric, and too is surrounded by shops. Aura Design Studio has created a scenario to enrich the area’s intensely interactive social life by offering students an alternative and dynamic space to unwind. All in all, there are four different core spaces; terraces lined along the south façade ensure a ribbon of continuity of the interior and exterior spaces between them.

Yasamkent Commercial Centre is visually and functionally defined by various green spaces and parks both in and around the courtyard, and which is directly linked to the amphitheatre via a series of large pots. Aware of a potential shortage of places to park, Aura Design Studio made provisions for indoor and outdoor car lots in two separate areas. Yaşamkent Commercial Centre’s strategic location and open-ended urban architecture make it one of Ankara’s most crucial upcoming commercial hubs to date.

-Project description and images provided by pRchitect


Tags: ankara, aura design studio, grand bazaar, Turkey, Yaşamkent Commercial Centre

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