ArXellence 2 Thessaloniki

International Ideas Competition for the New Central Business District (CBD), port area, project Carmen  pdf    

The book ArXellence 2

Awarded Proposals  ArXellence 2

programm  pdf




Site Transformation



view from west


view from east



Firmitas      -consistency, firmness, stability, etc.

Utilitas        -fleibility, functionality, utility, etc.

Venustas   -attractivness, delight, beauty, etc.

This ‘eternal’ design criteria stand behind the project Carmen for the Central Business District of Thessaloniki, to put things in order again.

The vertical rhomboid-prisms and their intersection with the lower, rectangular-prisms, create, together with the preserved historical buildings, new streets (in continuation of the existing ones), and they create a variety of new spaces like piazzas, court yards, patios, etc.



.view from aveue 26-is Oktovriou



actual site


site transformation



view from the port area




cross-section of the vertical rhomboid-prism


The typical space type in the vertical structures have a minimum clear hight of 3.00m and a minimum span of 1.60m. This allows for classroom-, laboratory, office-, resident-, service- and many other (non polluting) activities and, you don’t have to worry about energy issues, Carmen is an independent, self-sufficient ‘power plant’, there is abundant energy production as shown on the second sheet of the presentation. The project is a contemporary interpretation of firmitas, utilitas and venustas.



structure – 8 of 74 equal main frames (with vertical circulation and floor slabs)


The earth would not be as unique a planet, equipped with an ecosphere, if the sun didn’t keep supplying it with energy

Harvesting and processing of geothermical energy and sunlight will heat, cool and power the spaces of all the various activities extending over an area of about 400’000m2.



menu of building enveloppes

selection of three basic configurations of photovoltaic panels for maximum harvest of electrical energy



building enveloppe, “quarry” type


enveloppe, “rhombo” type


enveloppe, “ribbon” type

landscaping on ground floor, on 7-th floor and on roof top



site areas



Nousias Tannery

Porto Palace and Benis Tannery


Pumping station


Slaughterhouse and Charilou Refrigerators


Fix Brewery



architecture artisanal collection


“I don’t work to please conventions, I work to please myself”


One thought on “ArXellence 2 Thessaloniki

  1. ArXellence 2: The results of ALUMIL’s international architectural competition

    “ArXellence 2”, ALUMIL’s international architectural competition, was successfully completed on Saturday, November 21st, with the announcement of the 6 prizes and 4 honorable mentions. After the first successful “ArXellence” competition in 2018, our company decided to organize “ArXellence 2”. The competition was endorsed by the International Union of Architects (UIA) and was carried out in constant and close cooperation with UIA’s International Competitions Commission (ICC Council). ALUMIL, as the organizer, ensured full transparency and implementation of UNESCO’s international standards for Architectural Competitions. The members of the international voting jury guaranteed the results, as they evaluated the proposals and awarded 6 prizes and 4 honorable mentions, according to the competition’s brief.

    The Challenge

    ALUMIL made an open call for proposals and ideas regarding the redevelopment of Thessaloniki’s western coastal side. “ArXellence’s 2” subject was aiming to receive innovative ideas from the global architectural community about the creation of a new Central Business District (CBD). According to the criteria set by UIA, the Business District should be characterized by high energy efficiency and sustainability, redefining the west gate of the city to welcome citizens and entrepreneurs (contribution to sustainable development, social impact, economic viability etc.). The evolution and redesign of Thessaloniki’s misused western waterfront will redefine its position on the international map and improve the quality of life for citizens. Furthermore, Thessaloniki will restore its prestige as a leading city in the Balkan area, attracting investors, businesses, and new visitors.

    ArXellence 2… in numbers

    The participation in “ArXellence 2” exceeded our expectations: 1.464 registrations from 90 countries and 173 submitted projects. Due to restrictions that coronavirus pandemic has caused, the evaluation of the proposals was conducted online following the international protocols. The Jury examined in detail every submission entry via teleconference and simultaneous projection of the proposals created by architects around the world. The overall evaluation by the international Jury resulted in 6 prizes and 4 equal honorable mentions, meeting the criteria of UIA.

    The Jury

    Voting jurors

    Kasper Guldager Jensen, UIA representative (Architect, Denmark)

    Nikolaos Salpingidis, Alumil representative (Innovation Director, Greece)

    Gabriella Carillo (Architect, Mexico)

    Lauren Haiden (Architect, South Africa)

    Dimitrios P. Tsomocos (Finance & Management, UK/Greece)

    Alternate jurors

    Sara Martin Camara, UIA representative (Architect, France)

    Oren Sussman (Law & Finance, Israel)

    Professional Advisor of the Competition

    Evangelos Lyroudias, Alumil Consultant (Architect, Greece)

    The Prizes

    The 6 prizes awarded by the Jury of “ArXellence 2” are the following:

    1st Prize

    Title of proposal: The Lodge

    Competitor ID: d15bd86f-2938

    Name of participant: Alejandro Piqueras

    Architectural office: ALE Studio

    Country: Spain

    2nd Prize

    Title of proposal: The Green Ηub

    Competitor ID: 20d6099c-5616

    Names of participants: Angeliki Tzifa, Sophia Nikolaidou

    Country: U.S.A.

    3rd Prize

    Title of proposal: Thessaloniki Green Pier

    Competitor ID: c24d129b-ca90

    Names of participants: Mircea Mogan, Alexandra Virlan

    Architectural office: Mogan Architecture

    Country: Netherlands

    4th Prize

    Title of proposal: Bioclimatic Urban Lighthouse

    Competitor ID: 7fcb61a5-e4bc

    Names of participants: Alberto Mizrahi, Guillermo Lesch, Osvaldo Alvarez Rojas, Valeria Franck, Federico Menichetti, Leticia Alfaro, Philippa Jane Page

    Country: France

    5th Prize

    Title of proposal: De-fragmenting the Productive City

    Competitor ID: 6a1e10a2-7174

    Names of participants: Maria Chrysoula Akrivou, Antonis Athanasiou

    Country: Netherlands

    6th Prize

    Title of proposal: A view of the bay – A glance at the future

    Competitor ID: 5fc57b05-4a53

    Names of participants: Marco Broekman, Floris Van der Zee, Martha Seitanidou, Jordy Stamps, Yunshih Chen, Timothy Simons, Marina Lysenkova

    Architectural office: Bura urbanism

    Country: Netherlands

    Honorable Mentions

    (alphabetical order by country)

    Honorable Mention

    Title of proposal: The Gates of Thessalonica

    Competitor ID: d7633b4d-e29c

    Name of participant: Ivo Panteleev

    Architectural office: ADA – Agency Design & Architecture

    Country: Bulgaria

    Honorable Mention

    Title of proposal: Ships Forest

    Competitor ID: a8ef5994-ee73

    Names of participants: Perraguin Olivier, Spiegelstein Jacques, Letourmy Laurent

    Architectural office: hOP/ar

    Country: France

    Honorable Mention

    Title of proposal: Thessaloniki Wave (T-WAVE)

    Competitor ID: cb17c371-dd7c

    Names of participants: Andrea Michelini, Jacopo Berlendis, Alberto Gasparini, Tommaso Tassi, Alessandro Bonaventura, Mauro Baessato, Rade Batinica, Antonio Spena, Carlo Leonardi, Filippo Marsigli, Roberto Franchini, Giancarlo Franchini, Giacomo Gola, Davide Cappochin, Giuseppe Cappochin, Amarda Velcani, Thimi Rudi, Charis Christodoulou, Avra Bousda, Margarita Lekka, Vilma Chastaoglou, Matteo Taramelli, Roberto Zuccon

    Architectural office: F&M Ingegneria Spa

    Country: Italy

    Honorable Mention

    Title of proposal: City’s New Pulse

    Competitor ID: c981fd16-5b56

    Names of participants: Esteban Colmenares, Sanhita Chaturvedi, Shashank Jain, Anshul Bhargava, Ben Kikkawa, Joao Pedro Costa, Florentina Tsakiri

    Architectural offices: Studio C+C / Studio 4215

    Country: United Kingdom

    The outcome and future steps

    ALUMIL, being a leading international company specialized in architectural aluminium systems, organized this competition aiming to share the vision of a city that improves the quality of people’s lives. We made an open call for creative and innovative ideas and we are glad that this challenge inspired so many people all around the world. Despite the unprecedented difficulties due to the pandemic, we insisted on conducting the competition by maintaining its international character. We are proud not only for the large number of proposals we received from so many countries, but also because all these submissions were evaluated by an international Jury of highly qualified professionals. We believe that an ideas competition provides the necessary expertise that is crucial for every type of spatial planning. Architectural design has the power to invoke cultural evolution, and through architectural competitions we have the chance to offer new possibilities of improvement to our cities.

    “ArXellence 2” was a competition that reopened the discussion about the redesign of Thessaloniki’s urban space and created a platform full of inspirational architectural ideas regarding the redevelopment of the city’s western waterfront. But most of all, “ArXellence 2” sent a positive and confident message of hope and optimism, based on advanced urban development and sustainability.

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