BUS STATION ON NAHR BEIRUT
ahmad al bissani + fatima suleiman
Following a survey of the Beirut-Jounieh “Autostrad”,the issues, problems and the impact of this strip on the city were reported, in order to propose a transportation masterplan that addresses the city at multiple scales. Carrying on from that analysis, a location and design for a public transport hub for Beirut was also proposed.
The masterplan reinvents transportation north from Beirut. Firstly, the solutions were not limited to the “autostrad”, but instead a system that utilizes 3 parallel existing corridors was implemented; the internal boulevards (such as Armenia street), the “autostrad” itself, and the seaside road. Secondly, employing multiple forms of public transport, with varying frequencies and capacities, to satisfy the diverse journeys of the riders. Finally, hubs were allocated along the “autostrad” to connect the 3 corridors and the different modes of public transportations; the hubs also provide amenities and services for the public.
The location of the hub in Beirut was chosen at the point where the “autostrad” crosses over Nahr Beirut. At this point, the “autostrad” also meets up with a further 2 arterials: Damascus Highway and Corniche El Nahar, thus making this point a very strategic location. However, this junction is plagued with traffic and unsafe pedestrian conditions. Moreover, if we look under this crossing, at the ground floor of this junction, massive stretches of land are left desolate; dividing the 4 riverbanks. As a result, the proposed station will be concerned with connecting the neighborhood and opening the area to the public, and this is achieved by reclaiming and reappropriating the land under the highway to house the station and a diverse set of public amenities.