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Reconstruction of Five Corners Square and competition for Chmielna design begins

Kacper Kępiński
03 of March '21

The long-awaited reconstruction of Five Corners Square has begun. This is the first of many investments aimed at giving downtown Warsaw a human scale and reducing car traffic. The city has also announced a competition for the reconstruction of the neglected promenade.

Long-awaited reconstruction

Plac Pięciu Rogów

photo: ZDM Warsaw

The reconstruction of the Five Corners Square is the result of years of discussions, agreements and an architectural competition. The procedures and arrangements, which dragged on for months, have finally begun to take physical shape. The scope of the project includes the square at the intersection of Bracka, Chmielna, Krucza, Zgoda and Szpitalna streets, along with parts of these streets. The City Hall places the investment in the context of several other ongoing projects - from the construction of the Museum of Modern Art and the Central Square planned in front of it, to the reconstruction of Jana Pawła II Avenue between the traffic circles of Czterdziestolatka and ONZ.

Plac Pięciu Rogów

Photo: ZDM Warsaw

Two-thirds of the users of the so-called Five Corners Square are pedestrians, yet the area has so far been dominated by overscaled roadways and an unfavorable layout of pedestrian crossings. As part of the major reconstruction, there will be a uniform surface with no division between roadways and sidewalks, a fountain, rest areas, and small architecture. Twenty-two maple trees will be planted in the vicinity of the Jabłkowskis House. Looking at the visualizations, it's hard to resist the impression that there could be more greenery in this place, in contrast to the concrete slabs that will cover most of the square's surface. WXCA studio is responsible for the project. As part of its implementation, Szpitalna and Krucza Streets will also be rebuilt. The cost of the reconstruction is PLN 14.5 million.

The beginning of Green Marszalkowska Street

Zielona Marszałkowska

photo: ZDM Warsaw

In recent days, the Municipal Road Administration also signed a contract for the construction of a two-way bicycle path along Marszałkowska Street. New parking spaces will also appear on the section between Jerozolimskie and Swietokrzyska avenues, and pedestrian infrastructure will be rebuilt. This is the first stage of the implementation of the Green Marszalkowska concept, which will turn the downtown highway into a pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly and tree-lined avenue.

Marszałkowska

Photo: ZDM Warszawa

Competition for Chmielna

Zakres konkursu Plac Pięciu Rogów

photo: UM Warszawa

The inauguration of the reconstruction of the Five Corners Square was also an opportunity to announce an architectural competition for the reconstruction of Chmielna Street. The capital's neglected promenade, regularly run over by cars and of low architectural quality, is to gain a new face. The competition's scope covers the street in the section from Nowy Świat Street to the Stanislaw Wiechecki "Wiecha" Passage, Bracka Street (in the section from Aleje Jerozolimskie to the intersection of Bracka, Chmielna, Krucza, Zgoda and Szpitalna streets) and in the study (research) scope Widok Street. The author of the winning concept will receive a prize of PLN 40,000 and will be invited to negotiate on a sole-source basis. The competition also includes a second and third prize, in the amount of respectively: PLN 20 thousand and PLN 10 thousand, and an additional pool of PLN 10 thousand for possible awards. The entries will be judged by a jury chaired by Wojciech Wagner of the Bureau of Architecture and Spatial Planning of the Warsaw City Hall.

Chmielna

Photo: ZDM Warszawa

More information on the competition website: architektura.um.warszawa.pl/konkursChmielna

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