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Polish landscape architects winners of the IFLA Europe 2022 competition!

Dobrawa Bies
06 of October '22

Members of the Polish Landscape Architecture Association were awarded in the 2022 IFLA Europe Student and Young Professionals competition! The motto of this year's edition was Boldness & Beauty, and the challenge was divided into two categories - A (conceptual projects) and B (realized projects). Marta Szar won Third Prize in Category A, while Kamila Rogaczewska won in Category B. Congratulations!

Organized by the European Association of Landscape Architects (IFLA Europe), the competition was aimed at landscape architecture students and young professionals (who are under 35 years old), with the goal of showcasing and appreciating their projects internationally.

The motto of this year's edition was Boldness & Beauty - by combining these two themes, the organizers wanted to start a debate on the identity of the landscape architecture profession. The regulations posed such questions as: can boldness and beauty (boldenss & beauty) be a leitmotif when designing a 21st century urban landscape? With what examples, concepts and activities can these themes be defined? Is one of them more important, or can they be treated equally?

Park deszczowy

The concept of the Rain Park in Krakow received the Third Prize

© Marta Szar

Polish women appreciated!

The projects submitted from all over Europe were judged by a jury consisting of Urszula Forczek-Brataniec, PhD (former secretary general of IFLA Europe, professor at the Cracow University of Technology in the Department of Landscape Architecture), Darija Perkovic (vice president of IFLA Europe), Hendrik Vanderkamp (European Council of Spatial Planners) and Manuel Marti (Hunter Industries).

In Category A - conceptual projects, three grand prizes were awarded. First Prize went to Gali Vardi from Israel, Second Prize went to Wanying Peng from the Bartlett School of Architecture in the UK, and Third Prize was won by Marta Szar from Poland with her project The Rain Park.

In Category B - completed projects, Kamila Rogaczewska and her team triumphed. She received the award for the realization of PoPo Park in Wroclaw. This category also included the Audience Award, which went to Batuhan Ünlu from Turkey for his Kirkcesme Historic Park project.

The laureates and winners of the competition will attend the MARK Finland congress and the IFLA Europe general assembly, which will be held on October 14-16, 2022 in Helsinki, Finland.

Lokalizacja i plan Parku Deszczowego

location and plan of the Rain Park

© Marta Szar

Rain Park in Krakow

The Rain Park project was proposed by Marta Szar, a landscape architecture student from the Faculty of Architecture at the Cracow University of Technology , on the site of an ecological wasteland located in Cracow.

Despite being surrounded by highly urbanized quarters, the area is characterized by varied relief, hydrography and is biologically diverse, which further emphasizes the natural uniqueness of the place and its values, the author explains.

The main goal of the concept was to design an urban park space that would be a combination of a recreational area for local residents and a nature sanctuary with preserved wild enclaves and self-sustaining micro-systems. It was important for the author to take advantage of the hydrological potential of the site and apply a number of solutions to support local retention and transform the area into a coherent retention system. In the course of her work, Marta Szar performed a number of urban and landscape analyses, which allowed her to recognize the conditions affecting the site and match them with appropriate design tools.

PoPo park we Wrocławiu otrzymał I Nagrodę w kategorii B

PoPo park in Wroclaw received First Prize in the B category.

© Kamila Rogaczewska with her team from Leaf Project Studio, Katarzyna Kobierska (KA Kobierska)

PoPo Park in Wroclaw

First Prize in category B - completed projects was awarded to Kamila Rogaczewska together with her team from Leaf Project Studio and Katarzyna Kobierska from KA Kobierska design studio.

The project is located between Park Zachodni and a new residential development in Wroclaw. The space underneath the high-voltage power lines was transformed into a park for residents, where small architecture solutions are based on ecological engineering principles.

Our goal was to create a cohesive landscape that is embedded in the natural environment and allows for self-regulation through natural succession. The project required a visual connection between two spaces (park and estate), which were characterized by different aesthetics, function and degree of natural and urban qualities. The difference in elevation between the park and the new housing development reached 2.5 meters," explains Kamila Rogaczewska.

PoPo park PoPo Park

The designers used native plants

© Kamila Rogaczewska with her team from Leaf Project Studio, Katarzyna Kobierska (KA Kobierska)

Thanks to the construction of the embankment and the basin, the designers managed to enrich the landscape with a sloping path that is also accessible to wheelchair users. The team created a semi-natural environment using native plants considered weeds, thereby changing the approach of park aesthetics.

By mimicking nature, we wanted to conceal our design work. The plant species we chose were adapted by the existing ones and became part of the ecosystem," adds the award winner.

The color scheme used by the designers is consistent with the hues of the facades of buildings, outdoor facilities, decorations and neighborhood alleys. It gives the impression of a harmonious interweaving of the park and the estate.

Our design seeks to replicate naturally occurring ecosystems, in which the network of interdependencies is invisible, but plays a key role for effective functioning," the author concludes.

Dobrawa Bies

I used materials made available on the IFLA Europe website

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