Tetra Food Hall by OJAN Design Studio

“Tetra Food Hall” is a three-level commercial building with an area of 600 m2. It’s located on Kianabad Street in Ahvaz with different functions such as a café, restaurant, and pastry bakery. The building was previously covered with a flat stone façade without any architectural value neighboring mostly tall brick buildings. Thus, the client proposed a design matching not only the surrounding buildings but also being unique in context. With these in mind, the first goal was to maintain the harmony of the building with the city and to create a new typology to attract any passerby.

First steps, the existing façade was removed but the concrete structure was kept intact as a grid to support the new façade. As the building was placed between two brick buildings, the brick color was chosen to be somehow between those of the neighboring buildings. Then, brick walls were introduced in the structure and were curved in order to serve as a continuum of the city shell and lead the people in. This formation connects the interior and exterior to welcome the customers with their curved shapes at the entrance. As a result, there are several curved brick walls between concrete cells whereas each wall has a unique radius and angle depending on its function. One wall is specifically designed for the entrance; some walls envelope the seats in the restaurant and some others function as straight separating walls.

Moreover, adzed bricks were utilized to tempt the customers to touch them and be dazzled by shadows and the light reflection. These bricks were partly handmade by adzing workers and consequently, each brick has a unique texture and form. In fact, this approximation in the pattern of the bricks is considered an artwork that can never be made by machines.

Final steps, the interior design was developed by using more sensual stimulations such as various plants in flower boxes, green walls, hanging pots, and especially a tall palm tree in the center of the void as a symbol of its tropical context. Also, using more touchable materials such as concrete, black metal and natural wood in furniture and decoration were all in harmony with the bricks and plants.

This project includes two closed levels, one semi-open terrace, and an open roof garden which provides different spatial experiences, in spite of the coherence in their formations. Tetra Food Hall is a pattern of dancing curved walls extending the melody of the city to the inside.

Architects: OJAN Design Studio
Lead Architects: Ojan Salimi, Dena Khaksar
Photographs: M.H.Hamzehlouei