Cidade Das Artes
By Kirsten Kiser
Cidade das Artes is situated between the sea and the mountains in the center of Barra da Tijuca; a newly developed district of Rio de Janeiro.
Paying homage to an archetype of Brazilian architecture, Cidade das Artes is seen as a large house – a great veranda above the city.
The site is a central space at an interchange between two highways that cross the district master planned by Lucio Costa. Here, Cidade das Artes is at the very heart of the new city.
The building is a small city contained in one big structure raised and established on a vast terrace ten meters above ground. The terrace, with views of the sea and the mountains, is floating above a public park – a tropical, aquatic garden designed by Fernando Chacel.
The halls are contained behind large curved concrete walls, in a play of volumes and voids, between the two horizontal plates of the roof and terrace. The terrace is a public gathering space that provides access to all the facilities.
The facilities include a concert hall, that can be converted into an opera house, a performance space for chamber music and popular music, movie theaters, dance studios, numerous rehearsal rooms, exhibition spaces, restaurants, and a media library.
Cidade das Artes is a highly visible urban signal, a new landmark in the greater Rio area. The architecture echoes the beautiful curves of the Sierra Atlantica Mountains and the line of the sea. For train travelers arriving from the north zone, it forms the entry point to Barra da Tijuca on Ayrton Senna Avenue.
Program: Cultural equipment: Philharmonic Hall (1,800 seats) transformable into an Opera Hall (1,300 seats), Chamber Music Hall (500 seats), electroacoustic room (180 seats), headquarters of the Brazilian Symphonic Orchestra, music school, 10 rehearsal rooms, media library, 3 movies theaters, restaurant, shops, administration offices, technical spaces and parking lots.