All images and information courtesy of Vladimir Djurovic Landscape Architecture
Project Name: Samir Kassir Square
Address: Wygand Street, Beirut, Lebanon
Client: Solidere (Société Libanaise de Développement et Reconstruction)
Completion: May 2004
Total Site Area: 815m2
Given its location in the recently reconstructed Beirut Central District, Samir Kassir Square
acts as a prominent gateway, welcoming people to the heart of this reborn city. The
challenge of this project was to create a quiet refuge on a limited piece of land surrounded
by buildings, while addressing the prominent street frontage that it occupies. In essence, to
become a small escape dedicated to the city and its people.
Inspired by the existence of historic Ficus trees that have withstood the test of time and
witnessed all that has passed before them, the concept begins to unfold. The composition
revolves around framing and highlighting these sculptural trees, which embrace and protect
this public space. A raised water mirror flanking the street, physically marking and visually
expanding the space, a 20-meter solid stone bench facing the water, a long wooden deck
encircling the trees and adding warmth, are the main elements of the space.
Endless reflections, soothing sounds of cascading water, subtle lighting and greenery that
frame the entire composition, provide people with an intimate space in which, even for a
moment, one can be in the middle of it all, yet at the same time escape. A place to sit for a
while, reflect, contemplate, and rejuvenate.