Snøhetta has reimagined the old Muttra fish market in Oman, creating a modern public space with a translucent roof inspired by Arabic calligraphy
Muttra Market is located in Muscat province on the Gulf of Oman and is traditionally considered the center of trade for the Arab country, thanks to its busy seaport. The Norwegian architecture firm Snøhetta was invited to reimagine the original 4,000 square meter building from 1960, which has created a new image of the market for entrepreneurs and tourists.
The design of the project aims to create a culturally modern object that would match the rich history of the harbor. The concept was based on a combination of tradition and innovation, and the result was “a public space that unites the city, mountains and the embankment,” says the architects of the Snøhetta bureau.
The winding shape of the building is a natural continuation of the natural landscape of the bay. The building is crowned with a dome of metal slats, inspired by Arabic calligraphy. The roof forms a dynamic surface: the unusual structure creates an endless play of light and shadow thanks to the movement of the sun. The dome creates a feeling of lightness and airiness, but in addition to aesthetics, it also carries a functional load – natural ventilation.