petřiny square

  • architectural study
  • year: 2022
  • area: 21000m2
  • investor: CPI property group and Prague 6
  • authors: Jan Mackovič, Matěj Barla
  • in collaboration with: dominika čižmářová, max kušiak, dominika lukešová
  • images: author's archive

What relationship can a Petřiny resident have with his or her neighborhood? Is it possible to identify with my own apartment building entrance? Or with the front lawn? Is there a place he can return to years later and say, this is my home? Does the estate have a history at all? A tradition? A heart? Something to identify with?

Everything essential and worth remembering takes place in traditional places in the area - sports competitions in the Hvězda Game Reserve, midnight walks through the winding streets of old Liboc, cultural and social events associated with the Břevnov Monastery, the Bělohorská shopping street in Břevnov, the cinema in old Veleslavín...

The Petřiny housing estate, on the other hand, is not a magnet for its surroundings. Apart from the metro station, grocery shopping and a few services, there is no reason to go there. Unfortunately, it is only a dormitory, the commercial parterre has been practically omitted, and there are few job opportunities.

Most of it cannot be fixed, but the possibility of creating at least some kind of square is a great opportunity for the residents of Petřiny to at least partially compensate for what the original creators did not address or were not allowed to create. The creation of a coherent urban clearly defined space of high architectural quality and with many quality features can be a magnet and a place that connects local residents. From a place where I can get an ice cream in the summer and feel like eating it there too, to several places with good coffee and outdoor seating, a chance to play pétanque or ride a bike or scooter safely as a child. The possibility of opening multiple stands with a variety of snacks near the metro station (á la Manifesto). In the northern square, a chance to sit in the summer sun by the shallow water reservoir.

Above all, it is a place where farmers' and other markets can be held, a possibility to organize neighborhood events such as Petřiny SOBĚ, smaller outdoor cultural meetings with music, small sports competitions, etc. Last but not least, the opportunity for politicians to meet citizens in a dignified place. The ideal would be the possibility to create a community hall in connection with the area to be developed.

To strengthen the identity and awareness of its own history, we propose to create a sculpture of the " Petřiny giants". To give an idea, we choose three personalities from history who have a clear relationship with the place and can be identified with them. They are Julius Zeyer (poet and prose writer of the second half of the 20th century), Jaroslav Heyrovský (Nobel Prize winner for chemistry in 1959) and Otto Wichterle (scientist and inventor, discoverer of soft contact lenses, first director of the Macromolecular Institute in Petřiny). Their historical size would be emphasized by the height of the sculpture (10-12m). We propose to place it in the northern part of the square.