New city Centre in Stanežiče

Client: The City of Ljubljana, Housing Fund of the Republic of Slovenia
Site: Ljubljana, SI
Area: 64 ha
Year: 2005
Authors: Lučka Ažman Momirski, Marco Venturi
Collaborators: Peter Sovinc, Peter Rijavec, Miha Volgemut, Emmanuele Dall´oco

The solution focuses on the void created as a result of years of exploitation of the terrain, which has now acquired the dimensions of an altered landscape. The project does not attempt to modify or camouflage this fact, but rather seeks to emphasise that a degraded landscape can be used in the solution ideology. It is no longer possible to talk about architecture being incorporated into the landscape and being just an overhaul of the space in question; instead, the landscape needs to be surpassed or “challenged” in terms of architecture and vice-versa, or, in other words, the architecture needs to be adapted to fit the altered landscape. It is a modified urban landscape, which incorporates a well-thought-out harmonisation between the urban and the rural in order to provide a new and completely original image of the future of housing development. Due to the requirement that soft edges needed to be designed for the deep central part, the housing takes the form of terraced buildings which descend to the bottom of the valley, and the green roofs of these buildings adjoin to the central part of the empty space along their edges. The requirement to design functional areas for the development’s future activities is resolved in a completely original way. Through cutaways joined by a city rail route, the projecting slopes of the eastern edge of the gravel pit are extended all the way to the edges of Celovška Cesta, creating an area for multi-story business premises underneath. This allows one to walk unhindered between the floor of the newly designed valley and the edge of Celovška Cesta. Another unique feature is the public open area along the city rail route which lifts onto the business buil­dings’ green roofs.
By preserving the valley and its life, the project also preserves natural elements, while the design is intended to protect the area from the impact of noise and all unwanted negative influences. Activities such as the business programme and the mixed-use area are located in the structures towards Celovška Cesta, which constitute noise protection for the nearby settlements. The artificial edge created is linked to distant nature (mountains) and elements and characteristics of views.
Views of natural (Šmarna Gora, Kamnik Alps) and artificial (St James’ Church in Stanežiče) dominant features are the main motif of the public space in the green valley of the new settlement. The architecture is designed to open up views of the Kamnik Alps in the background, of the forests in the immediate vicinity, and of the new, coordinated architecture or of the green valley, which is the main motif of the settlement design.
Areas around residential buildings are more private (e.g. atriums by terraced blocks), but we envisage many green and entirely public areas.
The new settlement with the planned programme ensures leisure programmes while also maintaining the quality of na­tural elements of the space, which is the leading motif to attract visitors from far afield. The settlement has centres for arts and crafts and various shopping centres, particularly new forms of shopping centres.
The first phase of construction of the settlement is to integrate the settlement into the existing area. Construction is envisaged of a string of houses along the peripheral road, the scale of which is adapted to the existing typology of the peripheral residential settlements. The string of houses ends in terraced C-shaped apartment blocks. The tower blocks increase density in the southern and northern parts of the settlement.
The second phase is the main construction phase for the new urban centre and city streets. On the one side, the façade is formed by frontage of the terraced apartment blocks, with ground-level access to the green valley, and on the other side by structures that include service activities, such as bank, post office, shops. The upper part of these structures is intended for housing. The third phase completes the settlement in the northern and southern part and towards Celovška Cesta.
he manufacturing and service area is supplemented by a health centre with pharmacy and sheltered housing for ol­der residents. A morphologically similar structure in the northern part is intended for leisure activities.