Senovážný park

Although the stated intention of this project is to overhaul Senovážné náměstí, a square in the centre of České Budějovice (Budweis), what it really is about is creation of a park. The square is situated within what used to be a ring of fortification but what is nowadays a green ring encircling the entire historical centre of the city. That said, the square as such markedly lacks greenery, because it has been transformed over the last decades into a surface car park and an expansive area of land with no major landscaping. This is where the green ring is disrupted to accommodate the city’s infrastructure. The proposal creates an opportunity to transform the square into a park, achieve integrity of the green ring and link the city centre with the rivers Malše and Vltava.

The spatial arrangement of the proposal is informed by the linear path for pedestrians and cyclists that connects to the existing footpath around Mlýnská stoka, a canal, and directs it to Slavia, a cultural house, and the river Malše. This path is conceived as a tangent touching a number of solitary buildings scattered across the park and is complemented by the volume of new-build Alšova Jihočeská galerie (a gallery and museum). This backbone gives rise to smaller elliptical circuits that define the sub-spaces, each with a different atmosphere, of the park, creating conditions for a range of outdoor activities.

Visit the local post office and you will find yourself close to a woodland. Then walk past a cultural space that connects to the new-build gallery, continue towards the paved forecourt of the church, which amplifies the first impression of entering the city, and then, just behind the forecourt, walk past the central meadow where children play football in the afternoon and then past the green outdoor sports facilities continue all the way to the urban forest by the museum. The path does not end here, though – continue walking and it will, in an unforceful manner, take you all the way to the river.

We regard the area of the park as being so important it warrants a solution that takes a holistic and thorough approach to it. Therefore, the other remaining spaces are considered too – such as the one in front of Metropol, a cultural house, and the one around the music school. That is, we believe, the only way Senovážné can become a full-fledged park and cultural district.

Senovážný park


project: Senovážné square
location: Budweis
together with: Malý Chmel 
team: Natálie Ivkovičová, Šimon Marek,
Daniel Struhařík, Zdeněk Chmel, Alžběta Bláhová,
Miroslav Chmel, Georgi Dimitrov, Jan Urbášek,
Ondřej Válek, Jana Kobza
author: Miroslav Chmel (architect, partner of Malý Chmel s.r.o.),
Daniel Struhařík (architect, partner of peer collective s.r.o.),
Zdeněk Chmel (architect)
status: finished competition
topics: building on existing qualities, park, consolidation, incorporation
of traffic artery into the city park, waterfront, new gallery, a park
not a square, green ring enclosure

based on: competition