Until May 10 of 2020 the exhibition "Public Architecture – Future for Europe '' will be shown at the Schusev Architecture Museum in Moscow. The Financial Times calls Baar-Baarenfels' glass domes to preserve the Thracian-Roman ruins in Sofia, Nezavisimost Square, a "highlight of the exhibition". His project will be presented alongside the works of more than 40 European architecture firms committed to new architecture respecting the cultural heritage in Europe. Baar-Baarenfels designed and constructed three shell-shaped glass domes preserving the 2,500 years old underground ruins in the city centre of the Bulgarian capital.
During drilling work to expand Sofia's metro, a vast site of ruins from the ancient Thracian and Roman city of Serdica resurfaced; Johannes Baar-Baarenfels, of Baar-Baarenfels Architekten, encased the ruins with three parametric-designed glass domes. They reveal the city's ancient past in contrast with their 20th century surroundings. The domes are separated by two bridges allowing visitors to walk above the site and take a look down at the architectural treasure below.
The three domes are membrane structures made of steel and glass. The exciting form is created by single as well as double curved glass panels. They span an area of around 16x16m. Designing a low rise of 2.10m was a static challenge in order not to divide the square.
With his striking structure Baar-Baarenfels creates a new awareness of public space and the city's cultural heritage.
The relevance of the construction goes beyond its mere architectural significance. After all it is located right in front of the Bulgarian Parliament, the Council of Ministers and the President's Office. It can be seen as a sign of a new beginning for the city, as its hidden ancient past is brought back to life through architecture that points to the future
Johannes Baar-Baarenfels worked in Sofia in cooperation with local architect Hristo Guentchev. The project was implemented by local companies. Planning, building permission and construction took one year to complete.