BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE

Designed by Project V Architecture through a participatory workshop programme in collaboration with students of architecture from Bosnia & Herzegovina, our Peace Centre will transform a war-ruined house into a vibrant public destination for year-round arts and reconciliation activities.

The first-ever self-sustainable centre dedicated to peace in the Western Balkans, the Peace Centre is designed to be a transferable model for other post-war sites, aiming to become part of a development framework for the entire region.

BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE
BUILT SUSTAINABLY, FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE

LOCATION

The site of our Peace Centre is symbolic. It lies between two divided villages: Petrov Gaj ( Serbs) and Kevljani (Bosniaks) and sits adjacent to the playing field where Most Mira has been conducting its peacebuilding activities since 2009.

Prior to the war, the playing field was a communal space shared by both villages. But in 1992, hundreds of Bosniaks, including our founder Kemal, were rounded up here before being taken to the Omarska concentration camp nearby.

By salvaging and transforming the site, including its war-ruined house, into a vibrant public facility for cultural and reconciliation activities, our Peace Centre offers new promises for reconciliation.

DESIGN

The design of the Peace Centre was led by Vernes Čaušević of Project V Architecture, a British-trained Bosnian architect now based in Sarajevo, in collaboration with renowned Austrian rammed earth construction specialist, Lehm Ton Erde.

The design utilises the existing ruin on the site to carry on memories from the 1990s war. Its street-facing facade bears a colourful mural, representing the more recent arts activities organised by Most Mira, which opens possibilities as a 'canvas' for changeable stage settings.

Around the adapted ruin, new, individual pavilions made from rammed earth will be built, as if in conversation with the existing structure. This will transform the formerly private house into a public courtyard and outdoor theatre with rooms spiralling off the central courtyard, including a flexible space, arts studio, crafts workshop and dormitories for visitors.

MATERIALITY

The building will be principally made of rammed earth, a material linked to local construction traditions. This not only revitalises similarly-forgotten ways of construction in Bosnia & Herzegovina, but it also promotes an honest way of using and celebrating the use of earth as both structure and facade. As the soil and earth is sourced from divided communities, the materiality also becomes symbolic of bringing people together.

The rammed earth mixture uses recycled waste material, including material derived from demolition of the ruins, as well as loam and clay from local quarries and an iron ore mine nearby. Rammed earth holds a very low embodied energy, provides good thermal performance, and is a low-carbon and low-cost material. The environmental design strategies also include rainwater collection and re-use.

FACILITIES

FACILITIES
FACILITIES
FACILITIES
FACILITIES

CONNECTING PEOPLE GLOBALLY

  • Year-round safe meeting space for all young people (free from political pressure)
  • A performance space for theatre and visual art practices with seating up to 50 people that can be extended into the entrance hall to seat up to 70 people
  • Workshop areas and private offices for staff
  • Accommodation for local and international visiting students and academics with bedrooms and dorms
  • Entrance hall for informal gatherings
  • Artists studio
  • Quiet work space for visitors
  • Outdoor courtyard to be used for public events, screenings and performances
  • Landscaped gardens and terraces

TIMELINE

Our Peace Centre was designed through a series of participatory workshops that began in 2014.

They were conducted with Bosnian architecture students from the Banja Luka and Sarajevo universities (the first time that these student groups had worked together since the war), as well as local young people, teachers, arts organisations and international students from around the world.

Take a look at the timeline below to see the process of how we designed our prize-winning centre.

2009.

Youth arts festival.

2010.

Youth arts festival.

2011.

Youth arts festival.

2012.

Organisation begins regular Theatre programme.

2013.

Organisation takes ownership of future Peace Centre location and begins regular Democracy and Youth programme.

2014.

Young Architects Workshop with architects and students from BiH and UK, contextual research in Kevljani and Prijedor.

2014.

Exhibition and Public Consultation with the youth and local community for the sustainable Peace Centre project in Kevljani.

2014.

Exhibition and Design Consultation with students of architecture from Banja Luka, at the Music Pavillion, Banja Luka.

2014.

Exhibition and Public Consultation with youth and local community in Prijedor Theatre, alongside the yearly production.

2015.

Design Workshop and Developing Feasibility Design options with students from Sarajevo and Banja Luka Universities in Kevljani, Prijedor.

2015.

Preparing the Concept Design, Expert Opinions and Outline Planning Permission.

2015.

Meeting with global experts for rammed earth construction and researching buildings built from rammed earth in Austria and Switzerland.

2015.

Workshop for research and design with students and young architects from Banja Luka, Sarajevo and UK, in Kevljani, Prijedor.

2016.

Presentations about the Organisation and Peace Centre project for fundraising in London.

Outline Planning Permit Granted

2016.

Student Design Workshop with students from Banja Luka and UK, and design workshop with global rammed earth experts in Austria.

2016.

Architectural and Graphic Design Workshop with students, young architects and graphic designers from Banja Luka and London.

2016.

Exhibition and Public Consultation with youth and local community in Prijedor Theatre, alongside yearly production.

2016.

Workshop for Sourcing Earth Samples from 10 locations from Prijedor, Omarska and Kevljani. Preparation of samples for preliminary testing.

2017.

Preliminary compression strength testing of samples in Prijedor. 4 different mixtures with material from 10 locations.

2017.

Detailed Design Development, preparing the Developed Design for costing, building permit and preparing material for crowdfunding.

2017.

5 day Rammed Earth Prototyping Residency with global experts, local builders and 12 Students from Banja Luka, Sarajevo and London.

2018.

Testing Samples at the Institute of Materials Banja Luka and commenced preparation of Technical Design for Building Permit.

2019.

Fundraising, re-structuring organisation, forming of Capital Committee. Appointing Engineering Consultants for Detailed Design Stage.

2020.

Detailed Technical Design Development. Renewed Outline Planning Permit.

2021.

Detailed Technical Design Development. Received prestigious international Award for Sustainable Construction.

2022.

Architecture & Peacebuilding Summer School in Kevljani with students from across B&H, Europe and the Globe. Full Technical Design Documents completed.

2023.

Project. Submitted for Building Permit Approval. Application Processed with minor updates. Awaiting Building Permit. Tender Pack prepared.

AWARDS

2023

Finalist
New European Bauhaus Prizes


2021

European Silver Award
International LafargeHolcim Awards for Sustainable Construction


2018

Best Idea
Collegium Artisticum National BiH Architecture Award


2011

Social Impact Award
Erste Foundation Award for Social Integration