British architectural critic and writer Jonathan Glancey has chosen Tbilisi’s Ministry of Highway Construction among his top ten Brutalist buildings around the world, featured in the new book This Brutal World by Peter Chadwick.
Built in 1975, the Georgian capital’s Ministry of Highway Construction was designed by the then deputy minister of the Georgia Ministry of Road Construction George Chakhava, meaning that he was both architect and client on this project. Arguably more Constructivist than Brutalist, the building was both influenced by the Russian Revolutionary architects of the 1920s and inspired by nature in its structure, which features an interlocking structural grid. Mr Chakhava’s aim was to design the building to somewhat resemble a tree, taking up as little space on the ground as possible, with the building’s floors opening out like branches from a central root. Subsequent to a period of restoration, since 2007 the building has served as the headquarters of The Bank of Georgia.