USJ Project Campus de l’Innovation, de l’Economie et du Sport

  • Damas Street, Beirut-Lebanon


    Damas Street, Beirut-Lebanon
  • 6,000 sqm


    6,000 sqm
  • Completed 2005-2011


    Completed 2005-2011
  • Youssef Tohme and 109 architectes

    Main Architect:

    Youssef Tohme and 109 architectes
  • Type

  • Built area

    60,000 sqm
  • Client

    Université Saint-Joseph
  • Project

    Charles E. Maroun Consult
  • Consulting Structural Engineer

    Rodolphe Matar
  • Consulting Mechanical Engineer

    Ibrahim Mounayar
  • Consulting Electrical Engineer

    Georges Chamoun
  • General Concrete Contractorc

    Hakime Entreprise
  • Photography

    Joe Kesrouani

Representing a bold design with idiosyncratic Brutalist expression, integrating the city into the project while extending public space vertically, and rationally arranging services in the lower levels.

We asked ourselves what determines the relationship between people and built enclosures, and wondered whether different functions can be superimposed. Here we took risks – even with the material selected for the USJ project: in-situ concrete; a substance that is both ambivalent and yet enables everything. Our use of concrete is for the posing of questions – not as a medium to obtain a certain form or aesthetic. Deep recesses and rough edges incorporate the architecture of the immediate neighborhood into the design.

  • Mass Plan
    Mass Plan

Set in a quarter of the city where nothing of the old urban structure survives, the building achieves autonomy without appearing monolithic.

The complex organizational structure, in which uses are repeatedly superimposed to create tensions between them, follows a constructive logic that deviates entirely from conventional layouts. The individual volumes cannot be read, delivering the impression of a continuous public space. With design and construction calling for untreated in-situ concrete, it tests the limits of formwork and casting techniques.


  • Bauwelt - 2012

    Bauwelt - 2012

    Youssef Tohme interviewed by Bauwelt in 2012 on the USJ Project in Beirut.