Leading idea of Vistula Waterfront design was to refer to existing urban site by providing a composition opening towards the Vistula River and reinforcing the links with Khal’s Square. Architects wanted to create specific character of particular parts of the boulevard by alternating different kinds of temporary urban space and park areas. The boulevards were designed concerning variable water levels in the Vistula River. In result the bank changes its shape with the height of the water in the river.
Architects decided to refer to the temporary, easily demolished, floated pavilions proposed over the distance from Swietokrzyski Bridge to the Sidlesian-Dabrowski Bridge. Pavilions are placed on the modular construction attached to the dolphins. This solution enables pavilions to float on the water surface during the overflow. Temporary constructions were supplemented with seasonal cafes, pergolas with different functions such as space with anti-smog green walls, artificial beach, boulders, pond with concrete “ice”, skatepark, bicycles stand, trampolines, hammocks, swings and green sculptures which can act as playground or place to rest.
The core of pedestrian communication system consists of 8 meters wide promenade and squares designed on the main communication axes. The boulevard surface is fully adjusted to disabled people. Its non-treshold, plain and anti-slip surface. Appropriate traffic signals, information points and lighting system aim to provide comfortable and available space for every user.
Taking into account flooding areas, another bicycle path was provided on the upper part of the boulevard. The area does not allow car access. Only emergency, technical and supply cars have entrance permission. Access to newly designed buildings is provided from Wybrzeże Kościuszkowskie street giving opportunity to park underneath the Creative Services Building.
The whole concept was supplemented with three new public buildings. The Multifunctional Hall, Creative Service Building and the Restaurant. The plan also proposed new sport functions for Khal’s square.
THE MULTIFUNCTIONAL HALL
The hall can be arranged for theatrical, artistic, conference or mini-trade fair. Building opens to the Khal’s Square towards the Vistula river, giving the possibility of enlarging its usable space. It allows to organize mass events such as concerts or tournaments. The purpose of the designed building is to provide flexibility for variety of events. The multifunctional hall with mobile walls, auditoriums and stage provides different configurations of space arrangement.
CREATIVE SERVICES BUILDING
On two floors with total area of 1200 m2 architects designed galleries, shops, crafts and creative services. It was planned to promote Polish design by exhibiting and selling products designed in Polish Academy of Fine Arts (ASP).
SQUARES AND SPORT FACILITES
Square in front of the exhibition hall changes its function depending on the actual events. Its size allows to organize a food festival, fashion shows, mini soccer fields, exhibitions, concerts, outdoor cinema, trades, conferences, outdoor events, breakfast fairs, workshops. In the vicinity of the square designers proposed additional spaces for street dances and relaxation pergolas with hammocks and sun loungers. The adjacent sports grounds have separate areas. You can find there skatepark, tennis court, basketball and volleyball, palant and badminton terrain. It is possible to convert two sport fields into the ice rink and curling surface during the winter.
In order to preserve biological diversity, which is part of environmental heritage of the city, it was decided to keep diversified dwelling conditions and abide consistency rules of ecological space.
Almost whole tree stand was kept and some new plantings were provided to underline conceptual view axes. Dwelling and high grass was implemented on the river bank to maintain natural character of the boulevard. Important for the city’s biological system is vegetation provided in pergolas. Except vines and trees, the smog-absorbing moss panels increases oxygen balance and eases city climate. 1sqm of moss panels = 79 trees, which gives us 47 400 designed trees.
Award: 3rd place
Lead Architects: ELEMENT - Jakub Figel, Filip Kurasz; GRAPH31 - Joanna Małuj
Team: ELEMENT - Karolina Trybulska, Karolina Jankowska
Location: Warsaw, Poland
Project year: 2017
Visualizations: © ELEMENT / www.welcometoelement.com