Neighborhood living room
The project Urban pockets of Belgrade deals with abandoned urban spaces with the aim of including the local community in their improvement and activation based on the principles of sustainable design. With an appropriate intervention these spaces can become part of daily life of local residents and present an important contribution to the overall quality of life in the neighborhood.
Urban pocket Room with a view in Baba Višnjina street in Belgrade, had its opening in 2011 and covers approximately 1000 m2. The project’s Investor was the municipality of Vračar, and the project won the Grand Prix of the Third Salon of Landscape Architecture in 2009. This year it has been nominated for the the European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture – Mies van der Rohe Award 2013.
The design includes a zone of active recreation with fitness equipment, a zone of calm relaxation with seating and a central zone of gathering where the seating sculpture is located. Symbolically, the authors of the Room with a View urban pocket, Vesna Gvozdenov i Jovana Kovačević, both lanscape architects, wanted their intervention to provide a different experience of urban space – to create a room with a different view.
The projects main idea was to encourage residents to acknowledge green areas as extensions to their own living rooms and to transmit the model of behavior from the inside of their home to a public open space, which is just as much part of their everyday life.
The main focal point is the sculpture Room with a View. The structure is inspired by the urban tissue of the Vračar municipality. The birds are part of the structure, but are emphasized through color and form and simbolize the freedom of movement in a public space. The sculpture provides visual identity and becomes a new meeting place and a landmark. Additionally, the space is visualy dominated by a graffiti, work of street artist Branko Tešević.
The authors of this urban intervention successfully created a space tailored to the users needs, increased the awareness of the public about public space and contemporary art, and above all to promote landscape architecture as a multidisciplinary field that deals with open public spaces.
Open spaces are the hubs of social and urban life, and should therefore be maintained and improved, housing various activities and different events and processes, rather then be perceived as leftover spaces between the surrounding architecture.
Text and photos: Vesna Gvozdenov