Mehrad Mahnia and Alireza Bayramvand from Tehran-based theAlliance design the Persepolis Entrance Pavilion as a 200 sqm open-space, multi-functional pavilion located at the entrance of Iran’s renown UNESCO World Heritage Site.
On top of the rocky mountain of Rahmat in the plain of Marvdasht, the ruins of Takht-e-Jamshid Palace are pre-eminent. Construction of these palaces started at the time of Darius I (521 BC) and was not completed in less than a period of 150 years.
For the Persepolis Entrance Pavilion, the form-finding process is guided by an indirect modeling algorithm dealing with axial lines of the space at its core, developed by our team which indirectly guides form-finding and geometry.
Through this strategy, “Medial Surfaces” are derived by controlling axial lines which eliminates direct control over the surface’s geometry.
The doubly-curved surface produced by this method divides the space into 3 main zones: the entrance, a VIP room for guests and the main hall, which is the core part of the project and provides a gathering area for a variety of cultural events, such as exhibitions, lectures, and book publishing events.
From a rationalization approach, the doubly curved surface is translated into planar quad panels for simple constructability in response to a limited execution budget.
By extracting the conjugated line network of the quasi-minimal surface and connecting the intersection nodes, a set of planar quad cells were defined.
These planar quads were then produced from aluminum sheet material, by laser cutting the sheet and then bending the edges using a CNC bending machine.
Fabrication and construction costs are drastically reduced through the intelligent geometric rationalization to planar quad panels of the doubly curved surface.
This simplification of the complex geometry through mathematically driven algorithms reduces costs regardless of the core complexity of the geometry.
This rationalization strategy reduced the construction cost to 200 GBP/sqm.
Due to UNESCO’s unique regulations related to construction on World Heritage Sites, the pavilion is a semitemporary structure, constructed without masonry materials or permanent construction techniques.
Hence, the pavilion is dismountable from the site at any given time.
Each piece of the wooden structure of the pavilion, which is unique in terms of geometrical properties, is prefabricated and deployed to the construction site, including the aluminum panels.
The project was fabricated and assembled during a mere two-month period facilitated by the pre-fabricated approach to construction while ensuring easy dismantling of the pavilion as needed.
Project: Persepolis Entrance Pavilion
Design Team: Mehrad Mahnia and Alireza Bayramvand
Geometrical Rationalization and Detail Design: Mehrad Mahnia, Alireza Bayramvand
Wooden Structure Consultant: Mohammad Panahi and Behrang Bani Adam
Steel Platform Structure: Alireza Miri
Wooden Structure Modelling And Analyzing: Reza Fattahi
Fabrication Director: Mehrad Mahnia
Fabrication Team: Hassan Asnavandi, Mohammad Mahdi Sefidi, Alireza Bayramvand, Nima Safari, Saman Zaree, Soroush Asadi, Aria Sanei, Ehsan Alereza, Sadegh Pasalari, Mohammad Mousavi
Photographers: Deed Studio