Narutowicz Square in Warsaw

/ mention in an open competition
/ December, 2013

WXCA – Szczepan Wroński,

Agnieszka Łańko, Michał Czerwiński, Małgorzata Dembowska, Marcin Bieńka
Artur Adamczyk (visualization)

Narutowicz square is an open space in a strategic place in Warsaw, in terms of communication as well as history and urbanity. At the western side lies the landmark of the square – the magnificent modernist church. At the other sides the square is surrounded by massive row houses erected in blocks. The square is intersected by a busy street with tram track formation and a tram terminus.

The concept provides for traffic calming by introducing a range of factors: standardization of flooring in terms of material, changing the flooring texture at the entry to an exit from the square and at pedestrian crossings, changing the height at the entry to an exit from the square, considerable widening of pedestrian crossings, introducing vegetated strips, as well as a proposal to change the road class. The tram terminus is to be redesigned, the number of holding tracks reduced and tram traffic calmed. The square is to include a retail pavilion linked with public transport stops and with the entry to the planned metro line.

The concept assumes stressing the semi-circular shape of the square by complementing the south-eastern frontage with development that alludes to the existing development by the height, mass and modulation. Thanks to that the square will acquire metropolitan nature, and the space between the old and new development is to be filled with boulevards with lavish greenery. The contrast between the metropolitan square with the surrounding park will make the merits of both those spaces stand out, which will highlight their distinct nature.

The design also provides for giving new quality to the space around the church by enlarging its foreground, creating a square around its body and uncovering the view on its façade.

/translation by