‘World Forum for Young Architects’, Kosice, UIA Prize, Slovakia, 2013

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Work developed in collaboration with Tosan Omatsone, Matus Bacinsky, Laure Dezeuze, Alexis Schulman

Košice was founded by a river providing one of the basic requirements for life – water. Besides that it has an excellent geographic location in the northern part of the Košice Basin which is protected by the Black Hill from the north and opens up to the flat terrain in the south. The significance of the city and its political and economic development was not marked positively only by its geographic location but also by its location at an important trade route leading from Balkan through the eastern part of Slovakia to Poland.

The whole city and its suburbs were woven with watercourses used to power industrial production but also to drain rain and waste water. Those watercourses were the Čermeľ Creek (Čermeľský potok), Mill Race (Mlynský jarok), Crayfish Creek (Račí potok) and tiny streams form the locality called Hliník (nowadays Terasa).

The river has always been a structural element of the city. For millennia settlements and civilisations have formed near rivers, lakes or water basins, because water is vital for human beings and their life cycle, it has been at the basis for the development of communications, agriculture and crafts, it has been a source of inspiration for poets, artists, actors and musicians.

It is enough to acknowledge that some of the most beautiful and emblematic cities are located near rivers, such as Rome, London, Paris, Vienna, St. Petersburg, Moscow, Prague, along with smaller cities such as Strasbourg, Basel, Bruges, etc.

While in the past, when Košice had up to 100 000 inhabitants, Hornád river was kept outside of the city, nowadays with 235 000 inhabitants, Hornád river was incorporated into the broader city center. Therefore, it is essential to analyze all the aspects of its influence with the connection to other possible presentations of water in Košice.

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Propositions for the content of the study The proposal needs to comply with the following conditions:

– respect the urban plan valid in the territory of the city of Košice or propose its changes and amendments based on the proposed solution
– respect the objects of flood protection or propose their adjustments
– respect existing green spaces in the surroundings of water courses and bodies of water
– respect facilities, buildings, objects in the vicinity of water bodies which are critical for the life of the city (system of high speed roads, heating plant,), new buildings and buildings which cannot be realistically relocated
– take into consideration the main pedestrian routes and open spaces and cycling routes according to the proposal of the urban plan
– respect the character of the natural environment, take into consideration the function of the transregional bio-corridor of the river and its surroundings
– when proposing the regulation for building heights consider the view of the city center from the east, especially from the main entrance directions

When solving broader relations there is expectation of:

– a conception and a system of water courses and bodies of water in the city as a whole
– a proposal for the arrangement of the river Hornad from the Ťahanovce Tunnel to the railroad bridge at Krásna
– a proposal for the revitalization of Mlynský náhon (the arm of Hornad which used to serve as water supply for the mill), its renewed inclusion into the city
organism
– a proposal for a more suitable inclusion of the Čermeľ stream into the city organismsrgtr (5)

In the solution of the segment A there is expectation of a proposal for:

– the unification of green areas from the river to the west, of the actual space of the river and areas defined by the river and the railroad
– the way of connecting the parks to the residential areas in the city centre
– the animation of the space, the ensuring of the continual presence of people, social control
– equipment for the support of recreational use
– adaptation of the Čermeľ stream
– adaptation of Mlynský náhon within the segment A

Location: Kosice, Slovakia
Lead design: arh. Arthur Toth, arh. Tosan Omatsone, arh. Matus Bacinsky, arh. Laure Dezeuze, arh. Alexis Schulman
Project year: 2013

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