Design: alexandros avlonitis | charlie alazraki

GSAPP 2009


In this studio, each student had to deal with the very fragile subject of ‘genocide’ and more specifically the Cambodian paradigm. The project was about designing a mixed-use museum, research, documentation, and educational center in Phnom Penh, Cambodia on behalf of  ‘DC-Cam’, an independent local organization dedicated to promoting memory and justice in Cambodia.
Respecting every genocide victim’s feeling of uniqueness, this project is trying to embody and reflect both global and local sensitivity related to genocide as a global phenomenon, as well as a Cambodian reality.
Its architectural operations will be the medium through which each DC-Cam visitor will be stimulated to experience the different stages of genocides through architectural operations. Its deep and ultimate goal is to experience the process that lead to genocide in order to prevent its repetition in the future.
As the genocide memorial is the core of the project, all other functions are conceived secondary as they lose strength without a deep understanding of the importance and cruelty of genocides. Its design, additionally, wants to promote democracy, human rights and equality. The project has a strong public character through its functions and design and searches, above all, public involvement.
Mainly focusing on the museum – memorial – monument, three main elements represent the core of this project: the crack, the landscape and the relationship between them. While the crack visibly means the breakdown suffered by Cambodian people, the landscape represents the country natural lifeline. Both realities interact in a contradictory but inevitable way. The same happens with the underground spaces that build the crack in the project and the landscape that lay above them.
The whole project surrounds the idea of two separate entities that, although at simple sight, shouldn’t be together, both need each other to fully represent history; to exist. In the project, the patio works as the threshold where these two entities converge suggesting the same reconciliation should happen in Cambodian contemporary reality.
The building aims to reflect the present city and adopt a built quality that is willing to promote a new architectural dialogue between the project itself and the urban fabric as well as between history precedents and the renewed Cambodia.
The public represents the first, and ultimate, aim of the project’s design.  


Daily Beast finally admits it screwed up and removes article which outed gay athletes on Grindr
But they still didn't see fit to say sorry until a further outrage.

The Daily Beast has finally admitted it screwed up and removed the article which outed gay athletes on Grindr. For many, the damage is already done. A straight journalist, Nico Hines, put the lives of queer athletes in danger for his article and it will still continue to live on in screenshots and websites like WayBackMachine.

Following the outrage online, editor John Avlon then removed some identifiable details of the Olympians and left the article up. This was still not good enough, especially as there was no actual apology. 


International Olympic Committee Condemns Article Outing Gay Athletes
“This kind of reporting is simply unacceptable,” the IOC said.

The International Olympic Committee has strongly condemned journalist Nico Hines, the author of a since-deleted article from The Daily Beast that critics accused of outing gay athletes.

“We understand the organization concerned recalled the journalist after complaints and withdrew the story,” said a spokesperson from the IOC in an email to Outsports. “This kind of reporting is simply unacceptable.”

This is the first time the IOC has spoken out about the controversy since Hines’ article, originally entitled “I Got Three Grindr Dates in an Hour in the Olympic Village,” was published last Thursday. Hines, who is straight and married, logged on to dating apps like Tinder and Grindr to report on the availability of casual sex in the Olympic Village. He allegedly received the most responses from men on Grindr, and that is why it became the focus of his story.

John Avlon, the editor in chief for The Daily Beast, claimed in an addendum to the piece that Hines’ intent was “to see how dating and hook-up apps were being used in Rio by athletes.”

Although it was later amended, the original article included information that could potentially identify the men who made dates with Hines, including the athletes’ ranks and the sports in which they are competing. Hudson Taylor, the executive director of Athlete Ally, told NBC News that exposure could put Olympians in danger.

“There are over 200 athletes competing in the Olympics from countries for which being gay is punishable by death,” Taylor said.

Out swimmer Amini Fonua hails from one such country — the Polynesian nation of Tonga.

“Imagine the one space you can feel safe, the one space you’re able to be yourself, ruined by a straight person who thinks it’s all a joke?” Fonua, who is competing in the men’s 100 meter breaststroke, wrote on Twitter. “No straight person will ever know the pain of revealing your truth, to take that away is just… can’t. It literally brings me to tears.”

Hines’s piece was eventually removed from the site, and the editors posted a note apologizing for the harm it may have caused.

“Today we did not uphold a deep set of The Daily Beast’s values,” the message read. “These values — which include standing up to bullies and bigots, and specifically being a proudly, steadfastly supportive voice for LGBT people all over the world—are core to our commitment to journalism and to our commitment to serving our readers.”

Its editors further promised that The Daily Beast will take steps in the future to prevent further anti-LGBT gaffes. “We will do better,” the site stated.



Concept Sketches: alexandros.avlonitis

Critic: Kate Orff | GSAPP - Columbia University







Design: Alexandros Avlonitis + Xenofondas Dialismas

Sketches :Alexandros Avlonitis



The current project is a proposal at an architectural competition for the redesign of the coastal zone of the harbor of Rafina, a city 25km out of Athens, Greece.

The project’s main idea lies on the re-negotiation between the current city and sea border by re-defining and re-designing the coastal zone, as a locus of connection between the two. Defining element and inspiration, is the specific site topography and the sea, as its waves leave curvy traces along the beach that appear to draw a new geographic line.

Basic design principles are:

(a) Re-designing the pedestrian zone, so that a constant visual contact with the sea is kept.

(b) Enriching the area with a variety of programmatic zones in order to attract multiple age groups, residents as well as visitors. The purpose of the dispersion of such diverse functions (resting areas, sports and cultural facilities, cafés and restaurants) along the coastal zone is to mix various users groups for a more vivid and dynamic, day and night, life.

Therefore we create a promenade along the waterfront, with various zones inserted; either for resting or with a specific programmatic character. Either by upgrading pre-existing areas or by introducing new interventions, the scope is to be relevant to the spatial qualities and needs of the adjacent part of the city.

This single route can be also perceived as 2 discrete parts, joining in the middle where the central square is found: the one starting from the old harbor, moving along the beach, crossing the creek towards the Karamanlis’ park and reaching the Panorama area and the second starting from the pre-existing location of the Coast Guard headquarters and passing behind the block of shops and restaurants, moves north towards St. Nikolas church ending up in the “Blue port”. In addition, multiple points of entrance and exit have been designed, so as to allow multiple user scenarios.