Discipline : architecture
Program : congress hall / concert hall
Location : Prague, Czech Republic
Period : 2017
Site Area : 105,153 ㎡
Total Floor Area : 14,280 ㎡
Credit : IAA
The architecture for the New KCP is a careful sculptural subtraction of the combined effects of movement of people accessing the new facilities, the vehicular circulation along the Magistrala Road, the Prague Metro route and the line of sight of the people gathering at this venue. Similar to Czech Cubism of the early 1900s, this approach releases the inner energy of the space and gives it a multi-faceted, crystalline character with subtle variations in light and shade.
With the current urban situation suggesting a contemporary insert, the new KCP functions as a gate (Belvedere) inviting people from the old city of Prague into a new part of the growing city fabric. Maintaining a sense of congruence with its context, the new KCP references the horizontal elevations of the existing facility and the surroundings. While the existing KCP layers each floor over one another, the extension does not reveal its interior characteristic and instead reflects a monolithic volume made out of white marble terrazzo panels sourced locally. Aligning with the Belvedere, the new KCP creates a generous opening at the first-floor level, visually connecting it to the southeast park.
The main idea for the first phase is to insert the new KCP without disturbing the existing structure and the urban surroundings. The new KCP is planned above the existing south-side basement parking area. This is done keeping in mind the connections to the Magistrala Road, the existing traffic intersection, the pedestrian bridges on the south and southeast sides, the Prague Metro as well as the functional integration with the existing structure. The new facility also gives a newer, more contemporary facelift to the existing KCP complex and the Nulse neighborhood.
Simultaneous to the construction of the new building, the area around the metro stations is renovated as a ‘Cascade Park’. Multi-purpose spaces are created on three levels: the Metro Station, the Magistrala road sidewalks, and the existing pedestrian bridge. The topmost tier ties together the East-West spaces physically split by the Magistrala Road. The cascaded areas serve as outdoor event spaces in addition to being an overlook (Belvedere) to the old city of Prague. The elevator shafts connecting the top level of the Cascade-Park are exaggerated towards the sky giving a sense of a gate framing the heritage of the old city of Prague from the southern side.
The interior exhibition space is divided into a parquet event space covering 5000 sqm and a circular exhibit area located in the main entrance hall on the first floor. The parquet exhibition space can be further converted into two smaller spaces each covering approximately 2000 sqm and 3000 sqm by double operable walls equipped with sound insulation systems. The height of the event hall ranges from 14m to 20m to accommodate performance art requiring soaring heights. Upon division into two smaller event spaces, the peripheral gallery along the southern side of the first floor becomes part of the approach to the western event hall.