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Commercial-Residential Complex (International Competition)




Name: Commercial-Residential Complex (International Competition)

Location: Mashhad, Khorasan Razavi, Iran

Architecture Firm: Fluid Motion Architects []

Architects in Charge: Reza Daneshmir, Catherine Spiridonoff

Design Team: Pouria Khodaeiani, Mohsen Tajeddin, Ehsan Hasanpour, Mehdi Bakhshizadeh, Ahmad Khosravi ,Avideh Kamrani, Bahareh Alaei

Structural Consultant: Eng. Hooman Farrokhi

Mechanical & Electrical Consultant: Eng.Mohammad Reza Ghoddusizadeh

Date: 2009

Type: HotelCommercialResidential

Status: Third Place


  • Land plats

The project begins with an evaluation of the 5 sites- that all together form the L-shaped site- based on geometry, views and sound pollution. Then it dedicates the brief’s different programs to each site. The plat along the main boulevard and away from the crowded intersection is dedicated to the 5-star hotel. The middle plat to the apartment hotel, the plat along the east boulevard to residential and the other plats are dedicated to the park and the multi-floor public parking, according to the brief.


  • Architectural Concept

Considering the similarity among the plats’ functions, the necessity of harmony in the project composition and in order to make an effective urban character, the design process is developed as below:

  • First, the potential occupied area and the demanded gross area of buildings on each plat, and the over-all massing are determined according to the brief and the master plan codes.
  • The permitted ground area and masses to build for each complex are extracted from the L-shaped site and transformed into an unshaped abstract and generic form.
  • The ground plate and the generic abstract form are sliced by the lines defining entrances and opening areas, and again revamped to the initial form.


  • Wall

The idea of a continuous wall, containing the 5-star hotel and small apartment units, is developed in a twisted form along the 3 plats of the site. The entrances and the inner courts emerge from the rotations and fractures of the wall. The wall, in addition to the variety in form, gives a distinctive urban identity to the project. All in all, the wall and the opening areas of the complex are connected to each other via the slicing lines, providing a single continuous landscape.


  • Spatial organization


The first and second floors are dedicated to commercial and public activities as the codes demand these functions projected on the northern Boulevard. As a result, the 5-star hotel and the commercial spaces are connected and tied together on the first floor via two separated ramps, one emerging from the interior space of the hotel and the other from the outdoor space


  • About the International Competition for Commercial-Residential Complex in Mashhad


Mashhad—home to the shrine of the 8th Imam of Shiites—is one of the most significant religious sites in Iran. It attracts many more visitors than the holy city of Mecca; almost 10 times as many per year. Given the economic and political power of the religious authorities in Iran, as tourism and travel overtake all industries around the world, Mashhad becomes the center of investment and development in this country.

The obvious need for accommodation and entertainment of the visitors has lead to major decisions in the recent Master Plan of the city. The Master Planning Vision has shifted from the strategy of isolation of the shrine via a green belt to a strategy of reconnection via boulevards. These boulevards are lined with large scale buildings with pilgrim accommodation and shopping as major functions. The site of the competition is located on one of the three main boulevards and acts as one of the three gateways to the religious site

The competition called for entries for a 5-star hotel, hotel apartments, residential spaces, commercial spaces, a public park and a multi-story public parking in a development of about 80,000 m2. The site consists of 5 plots, however the brief allows for and the master plan of the city encourages the project to merge the 5 sites into one.

The competition was held by an architecture office; The Eight Company. The client was a private Iranian bank- Bank-e Pasargad. Of the twelve teams invited to the competition, 4 had been widely known foreign office associates (Atelier Bow-Wow from Japan, BIG from Denmark, BRT from Germany and Guallart Architects from Spain).

The Jury was composed of architects and developers from the city of Mashhad and prominent Iranian architects from the Association of Iranian Architects, including Iraj Kalantari, Abolfath Sepanloo, along with Seyed Reza Hashemi. Of the remaining 11 entries from 8 participating offices, 3 winners and 2 honorable mentions were awarded. The three winners of first to third place will be awarded monetary prizes. In addition, the first place winner will be awarded a contract to execute the project.



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