In April 2014 the practice won its first international competition for the renovation of the Union of Bulgarian Artists in central Sofia. The UBA is housed in a 1970s pre-cast concrete building which acts as gallery space and administrative offices supported by additional commercial space – café / bar, retail & offices.
The proposal retained the existing frame and circulation routes but rationalised the internal layouts leading to a significant increase in usable floor space. At roof level additional gallery / commercial space was created around a sequence of external courtyards, benefitting from views over Sofia and the mountains to the south.
For the façade it is proposed to replace the existing pre-cast panels with glass either partially or entirely covered by a white enamel screen print. The intention was to give a unity to the scheme, creating a treasure box reflecting the cultural value of the contents.
Client: Union of Bulgarian Artists
Location: 6 Shipka Str, Sofia, Bulgaria
Status: Competition – 1st Prize
Team: William Conway, Florian Ballan