Team Representative: Blaž Babnik Romaniuk (SI) – architect
Contributors: Katja Saie (SI) – architect; Moica Mlinar (SI), Rok Staudacher (SI), Dominik Košak (SI) – architecture students
Janežičeva ulica 3, 1000 Ljubljana (SI)
+386 41 384 764 – firstname.lastname@example.org – obratdoo.si
R. Staudacher, M. Mlinar, B. B. Romaniuk, K. Saie & D. Košak
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1. How did you form the team for the competition?
The team was formed as we went along with the competition. We knew each other already from previous competitions and this was the first time that we collaborated on Europan competition.
2. How do you define the main issue of your project, and how did you answer on this session main topic: the place of productive activities within the city?
The current situation causes Industrial Area Liesing (IAL) to stagnate, because the land used for housing and retail would be much more lucrative. To preserve productive land use and to assure plentiful diverse employment opportunities, we saw that the main question to answer was: how the new urban development and new architectural typology of industrial building could increase the financial and functional appeal of IAL for productive and business companies. The answer we proposed is to increase common and shared resources at an urban scale (from energy production and use to shared spaces and tools) and to improve possibility of higher densities of land use by using new type of buildings that enables joining usually un-joinable uses (loud and quiet, dirty and clean…).
3. How did this issue and the questions raised by the site mutation meet?
After analysing the site and the potential uses (industry, service sector and business) we found the almost coincidental development of IAL and very inefficient land use. These conditions are detrimental for environment and land use but favourable for industrial and business use as it is very flexible and can conform to current economic condition of specific industry and services. We wanted to preserve this flexibility in a proposed urban and architectural concept but at the same time to improve land use, sustainability and efficiency.
4. Have you treated this issue previously? What were the reference projects that inspired yours?
This was the first time we delved in the topic of production and the city. What was more familiar to us were the questions of public/common space, walkability and density of diverse uses. We didn't rely much on comparable projects in this case as we saw insights from research of the existing and envisioned industrial production more useful. Regardles, we encountered some projects though, not so closely related to the production environments that we found very informative and inspiring.
5. Urban-architectural projects like the ones in Europan can only be implemented together with the actors through a negotiated process and in time. How did you consider this issue in your project?
The possible next steps in development of the project were quite clearly set already in the competition brief. What we saw as the most important aspect was the flexibility of gradual implementation of the restructured urban layout and the new building typology. This flexibility is understood as financial (development according to economic needs/possibilities) and structural (structural demanding buildings become necessary only after higher densities require them). Developers and business owners could follow the new guidelines for Industrial Area Liesing without compromising their organizational and financial plans.
6. Is it the first time you have been awarded a prize at Europan? How could this help you in your professional career?
This is the second time that part of the team received an award in Europan competition. In previous E13 session one of the team members, Blaž Babnik Romaniuk, won with two colleagues on the same location. The prize and the subsequent commission of a strategic masterplan, which is still in development, have proven as an exceptional opportunity as we are able to work on a large scale and complex urban project. Out of the project, we also started a very rewarding collaboration with the City of Vienna and our supporting local partner office (BEHF Architekten). We hope that the professional growth of this process will continue to improve our opportunities in the future.