Hicri Sezen Square is located at the junction of historical streets of Odunpazarı district, in the heart of Eskişehir. The square constitutes a public space and acts as an entrance to the touristic part of the city, frequently used as a meeting point for not only tourists but also the inhabitants of the city.
Odunpazarı district is known for its glass production workshops, where the local tradition of glass manufacture is still alive and active. Many artisans produce handcrafts like decorative glassware and jewelry, which are vastly exhibited and sold in small shops within the historical context of the city.
Inspiration for Hicri Sezen Square project comes from the desire of integrating this vernacular technique with the materiality of plaza. The ground surface is covered with many pieces of locally produced glass embedded within concrete, creating a playful harmony between the colorful, glossy surface of glass and raw, unfinished texture of concrete. This unconventional technique aims to establish a clear reference to local glass production, to stimulate and to enhance the local economy by creating a new type of usage for glass material, and to create an open-air museum where the local identity is exposed and exhibited. Moreover, active participation of inhabitants and producers of Eskişehir brings an additional value to Hicri Sezen Square project.
Flexibility of use and adaptability to existing trees and cityscape are the other main concerns for the project. Organic forms that shape itself according to what is already on the site are preferred to create an uninterrupted section line within the plaza. Each tree is considered as a focal point around which the different colors of glass pieces are organized in a concentric manner. In addition to the main illumination system created with spotlights on the floor and reflector sheets hung from tree branches, a portion of glass pieces are backlit with fiber optical fixtures embedded within the ground covering, adding a sense of depth to surface.
The new surface of plaza is lightly below from the street level, giving a definition to the area. Enveloped with a stepped surface, service areas are placed on the north side of the plaza. This amphitheatre-like terraced formation produces a multipurpose area, which can be used during many functions as well as the most common usage of the area: resting and gathering.
Founded in 2003 by Kerem Yazgan and Begüm Yazgan, both PhD. Architects, Yazgan Design Architecture Inc. is an architectural, interior, landscape and graphic design and construction firm based in Ankara, Turkey. The company has the capacity to create projects of different programs and scales that cover conceptual, design development and construction phases. Mixed-use buildings, retail, hotel, residential, office, educational buildings, hospitals, cultural centers, airports, and sport complexes are some of the building typologies that comprise the company portfolio. Yazgan Design Architecture also achieves interior and landscape design construction works alongside its project repertoire.