The Culenova New City site in Bratislava forms a pivoting point in the urban development of the Bratislava region. At its edges, different urban conditions and environments characterize the site. Each environment has its specific form, quality and usage.
A FLEXIBLE DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY
Culanova New City should become a true part of the city of Bratislava, with a strong urban structure and a high quality of urban life. The development of such a large city will take twenty years or more between the first groundbreaking and the last building. Meanwhile times of economic boom will alternate with time of economic downfall. Demographic demands and lifestyles may vary. Therefore we consider it very important to propose a flexible development strategy that can be used over time.
THE GRID: A PROVEN URBAN DESIGN INSTRUMENT
In order to accommodate a flexible development strategy, we propose a grid structure as design instrument. The grid is composed of parcels that are combined to blocks, between the blocks the roads are situated. This instrument provides for flexibility in the design of the blocks, while the quality of the public space is guaranteed by a set of basic rules for the street profiles and the blocks.
In the design proposal we present a catalogue of example blocks that shows the endless possibilities of blocks design, within the basic rules. An urban plinth of 4,5-meter internal height with public functions, or a fixed size of 47 x 58 meter are examples of these basic rules. The blocks can be built in several phases in order to improve their flexibility.
In an urban planning strategy the composition of the public domain precedes the design of buildings, since it will take years to execute all proposed blocks. In order to guarantee a high-end development two different profiles are designed to make a clear distinction between the housing streets, that run north-south and the wider troughfares, that run east-west, with the office development.
An open urban space: a central park for Culenova
Within the block structure a series of open public spaces can be made. This can be achieved by simply leaving blocks out on strategic positions. In the grid structure as proposed it is easy to create a central park as the heart of the Culenova new City. This can be a stepping-stone in the green structure that connects the existing green areas in the city fabric such as the cemetery and the Danube embankment.
THE ART GALLERY: A PIONEER FUNCTION
We propose to give the former heating plant on the Culenova New City a pioneer function. While the larger part of the site remains undeveloped the pioneering function attracts people and business to regenerate the urban flow and traffic to this part of the city.
The Museum Square
On the west side of the building, a sunken urban plaza will be made. This square will be part of main public space for Culenova New City. The lowered square forms the entrance to the new Bratislava Art Centre. The visitors enter the building on the lowest level of the former heating plant.
The Main hall
The main hall will be restored into its existing form, keeping the special shapes of the existing funnel structures. This hall can be used for all kind of large-scale events and displays of art works, comparable to the Tate Modern Turbine Hall in London.
The East Hall
The second hall is directly connected to the Main Hall. Large sliding doors make it possible to use this space separately or in connection to the Main Hall. On the east side of the building, the East Hall can be connected to the central park area. This allows for instance to make an outdoor Sculpture garden.
The North extension
We propose to enlarge the existing plant on the northern side with a new volume. This comprises the museum restaurant and shop on street level.
Architects: Neutelings Riedijk Architecten
Design Team: Willem Jan Neutelings, Michiel Riedijk, Hilbrand Wanders, Markus Freigang, Julia Söffing, Jef Pottier, Kenny Tang
Client: Penta Investments
Surface area: 120,000 sqm Status: Int. competition 2010, 2nd place
Photographs: Neutelings Riedijk Architecten