In 2006, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (www.SNF.org) announced its plans to fund the development of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center (SNFCC), a project that includes the construction and complete outfitting of new facilities for the National Library of Greece (NLG) and the Greek National Opera (GNO), as well as the creation of the 210,000 m² Stavros Niarchos Park.
Education and culture are the backbones of any advanced society. In funding the SNFCC, the Foundation’s vision is to provide the country and the city with the new institutional foundations it needs to move forward and with a framework for the future. Education, culture and sustainability, the SNFCC’s three main elements, are essential requirements in enhancing the potential of the city and its people and placing them within a twenty-first-century global context.
The magnitude of the project and of the Foundation’s dreams and hopes required the impact and the creative presence of a visionary architect. In February 2008, following a closed international design competition, the Foundation’s Board of Directors unanimously selected the Renzo Piano Building Workshop.
In selecting renowned architect Renzo Piano, the Foundation chose an architect at the forefront of the architectural profession, who possesses vision, intellectual curiosity and a historical and geographical understanding of the project’s location and significance.
In its new home, the Greek National Opera (GNO) ( www.nationalopera.gr ) will become an exciting destination for music lovers and architecture cognoscenti alike. The building will be a multi-use venue capable of hosting a variety of performances and events. Its stages will accommodate opera productions, musicals, concerts, theater performances, ballets, and multimedia art programs.