bering strait project



client : promoted: The Foundation for Peace and Unification

            supported: Korean Institute of Architects/Korean Tunneling Association/Korean

            Society  of Civil  Engineers approved by UIA

location: Bering Strait

architectural design: archivirus in collaboration with S4 architects

date: 2009  








Time is relative…humans have defined it and have considered it as a fact. Another fact is considered the separation of races in regions and the division of planet earth in different parts. Thinking in the same way, space can also be considered as relative even if it seems already defined. In an era where environmental, social and economic issues can shock, human is called to redefine space and time so he can restore lost hope and create peace… Thinking humans acting in equilibrium, an eddy is needed in order to tolerate the beliefs of each other and promote global understanding, to activate nonviolence as a transforming way of life and as a means of radical change. A cosmic spiral walk - as a result of the bridge between cultures - engages innovative social strategies for restoring the earth and communities. Links volunteers and circulates community educators around the globe as a practical way to prevent conflict. Promotes practical environmental solutions and protects natural beauty and wildlife. All of these flow in the union of the redefined space and time where H2O, the fundamental element of life is revealed……

THECIRCLES “Siberia and Alaska are presumed to have been connected in the ice age from forty thousand to thirteen thousand years ago. It was because the strait was frozen and covered with ice forming a land bridge. It is also presumed that ancient people of Asia as well as animals and plants were transferred into North America and subsequently into South America. However, when the ice age has come to an end about thirteen thousand years ago, the Bering Strait was filled with waters and the connection maintained for several thousand years became disconnected. As we all know, there was the Cold War age when the United States and the Soviet Union had ideological confrontation”. The two continents have their own circle of history, culture, morals. Once you are in the circle you are doomed to stay at the closed endless route. At this route everything remains the same, everything is enclosed in a path that beginning equals end. There is no escape, no exchange and everything is still. At the time that the eddy bursts in the circles their shape is altered. The circle of each continent is modified to an ellipse. The two continents are getting closer and there are about to experience a radical change at the point where they intersect. In the union, ideas start to be exchanged. The path is now open, new routes and directions are created and the beginning is now different from the end. Thus a new circulation system is created. Starting from Alaska, the train route elevates 50m above sea level to curve towards the north artificial junction meets the southern curved route of the vehicle that elevates from Siberia at 60m. At that point the train enters the union route while vehicles have already covered the half ellipse of the union in a slopping path. Trains are at 50m above sea level while vehicles have sloped at 40m and from now on both vehicles and trains travel together around the two islands where the peace park can be viewed. Approaching the southern artificial junction, vehicles start to slop to 20m – the elliptical route of the union is now completed - and they continue in a tunnel under sea level at -60m, following the south route towards the coast of Alaska. The train continues the elliptical route of the union at 50m – together with the vehicle at 60m – and at the northern junction slops at 20m in order to find the northern under sea tunneled route at -60m, heading to Siberia. The energy of the eddy has fulfilled its goal. The two circles have become ellipses that move towards each other and at their union is created a new space that engages - in a timeless manner - the two islands with the two continents.

TIME LINE Between the two islands, lie both National border and International Date Lines. Little Diomede lives in today and five kilometers away Big Diomede lives in the future. The definition of time fades out. The present becomes the future and the future becomes the present. The wholeness of disorientation is obvious and one could say that is about a timeless space or a space-less time. When am I? One would wonder in a non-time of a non-space. Once again the energy of the eddy springs in order to define the union of time and space.

H2O & THE MOLECULAR STRUCTURE OF ICE Species, history, diverse cultures, ethics, traditions, morals, are swept by the force of eddy. All the heterogonous definitions are mixed in the crucible while moving inside the spiral. The exchange of the elements is radical. As a result of the heterogeneity of the parts an explosion, that takes place above the two islands and the outcome are snowflakes landing on earth. Hexagonal volumes based on the molecular structure of ice become architectural forms. The fundamental element of life H2O appears once again to restore hope and create peace.

THE UNION USES ON THE TWO DIOMEDES The hexagon is repeated as a plan to both islands but the forms are depending on the use. A research center is placed on Big Diomede. Uses are relative to a community of scientists and volunteers, including laboratories, accommodation, exhibition center, first aid and storage. There is also an underground train station and car parking northwest of the island. On the other hand, on Little Diomede are placed public uses such as accommodation, trade markets, leisure and exhibition center, first aid. An underground train station and car park is placed southeast. Around both islands and on the slopes are places observatories which inscribe hexagonal paths. FOOTBRIDGE The molecular structure of ice is used once again for the structure of the connection of the two islands. The hexagonal deconstructed forms become blood vessel to carry a new DNA for global peace. The volumes are getting bigger as the path tends to intersect with the memorial MEMORIAL, A VESSEL OF LIFE Once the explosion took place, the redefined definitions are spread throughout the time line that runs between the islands. Hexagonal deconstructed forms based on the molecular structure of ice, become vessels of life that are negotiable paths for both human and wild life. Platforms that can be used as an ark during extreme climate conditions. As the memorial approaches the centre of the ellipse –the centre of the union- meets the footbridge. The spiral has now collected the new ideas and has let them peacefully travel to the infinity through light.


The structure of all units is based on the molecular structure of the water and ice. In order to fulfill such an idea, composing structural steel, pre-casted reinforced concrete, pile foundations and all means of constructional achievements up to date, might seem enough - but it is not! Communication, good will, creativity and lots of energy is the leading force to overcome the human “limitations”, walk through the severe climate difficulties and be driven beyond…