International Urban Architectural Competition for Savski Square, Belgrade, Serbia
Competition Entry, Honorable Mention for Unconventional Approach.
4mindArchitecture Team: Ilja Mikitišin, Igor Mikitišin, Nemanja Dačić, Rajko Anđelić, Miloš Pašić
The idea of the project is to connect the Savski amphitheater and the old core of Belgrade by reaffirmation of the already existing square, giving it a new identity and character through the contents and activities adapted to today's modern society.
The location where the interventions are planned is located in the central part of the city, in the immediate vicinity of the right bank of the Sava River. This area belongs to the Belgrade Center (Old Belgrade), the oldest preserved part of the capital that reflects the historical development and growth of the city from the city nucleus - Belgrade Fortress, towards the banks of the Sava and Danube. The existing wider situation faces traffic congestion caused by freight transport due to the lack of an adequate traffic ring that facts lead to large traffic jams in this part of the city.
Today's appearance, function and traffic situation of the square, despite its clear form, makes the Savski Square not a square in its essence, but a plateau in front of the old building of the Main Railway Station. By itself, it is just a transit station where people do not linger. Given all the odds, destructive processes, contradictions and urban dichotomies, THIS SPACE SURVIVED, and its circular matrix remained respected. Our intention is to reaffirm the already established urban concept of the square through the reorganization of its existing structure, at a time when Belgrade clearly craves a place for gathering and other events. Therefore, the Savski Square in an urbanistic perspective has a dual role. The first is to unite and connect the Old part of Belgrade and the complex of Belgrade Waterfront at the Sava Amphitheater where the square would represent the portal of Belgrade to the rivers. By this fact, we come to another important role of the square as an archetype of a public space designed and formed in order to attract and concentrate people.
The answer to this conceptual setting "lies" in the square formed through an architectural urbanistic concept based on several different aspects - above mentioned traffic, social spatial, functional, symbolic - historical, aspect of spatial sequences and an ecological aspect. Socio Spatial - Square as a city reflection. Functional - The square, as a place of gathering and hanging out as well as a new city central ambient which affirms the connection of the Sava amphitheater with the old core of Belgrade. Symbolic - historical aspect - Represents the idea of transferring the symbolism of the monument of Stefan Nemanja to the area of the whole square. This intention, observed from the point of the monument itself, was achieved through a clear spatial division of the square into two parts. They indicate the two basic identities of his personality during his earthly life - STATESMANLIKE AND SPIRITUAL.