Lima-based architectural firm 2.8x Architects has adapted a deteriorating cockfighting arena for outdoor living. The coliseum is located on a property surrounded by neighboring houses, but it was a piece of history going unused. 

The idea was to transform the old coliseum in a relaxing garden that would allow meditation maintaining the essence of its function through the years. A concept to be used so as to achieve the new image was the one of 'ruins.' That is to keep part of the existing stands and the central space figuring remains of what existed there back in time.

The tiered shell of the coliseum allowed for the designers to blend the old structure seamlessly with its new enhancements. Winding circular terraces are built on top of the original levels of the stands, maintaining the proportions and integrity of the original arena, and stones, steps and walls were repurposed.

There's a stark contrast between the center of the arena where birds used to fight and the new equilibrium of the space--yin and yang symbols set a meditative tone for the space and "reinforce the idea of a memorial garden."

The coliseum is small, but each pathway and terrace leaves a lot for visitors to explore. Perimetric walls feature creeping plants, trees in high terraces will grow to form a green curtain, and the landscape grows flush into the hills of the surrounding area.

The idea is not just to contemplate the space, but to be able to go through all of it. That is why stairs and ladders appear in different parts of the project. It is a dynamical project which offers various sensations and visuals.

The gardens are softly illuminated at night, which emphasizes calming water features and allows for appreciative reflection of the arena's former history of violence, in contrast to its binding community presence today. 

Read more about the project on contemporist >>