The international architecture competition for the Tartu Downtown Cultural Centre was won by Estonian architecture bureau OÜ Kolm Pluss Üks with their entry "Paabel", the authors of which are Lisette Eriste, Gert Guriev, Markus Kaasik, Helin Kuldkepp, Karl Erik Miller, Jana Pärn, Siim Tiisvelt and Ilmar Valdur. Landscape arhitecture was created by KINO maastikuarhitektid: Karin Bachmann, Kaisa Masso, Liis Pihl, Liina-Kai Raivet, Kristjan Talistu, Mirko Traks, Juhan Teppart. The winner received a prize of EUR 60,000.
In the opinion of the jury, "Paabel" is clearly stands out from other works with its well-thought-out architectural solution. The work was best able to capture the goals of the competition and provide solutions using elegant architectural language and professional technical execution. In the opinion of the jury, the building fits in well with the urban space, the interior solution is impressive and tasteful, and the outdoor space is well designed and balanced, fulfilling all important goals from the point of view of both biodiversity and the practical use of urban space.
According to Mayor of Tartu Urmas Klaas, chairman of the jury of the architectural competition, the jury’s decision was unanimous regarding the winner. ‘In all respects, the winning entry is the strongest work of this competition: architecturally, in terms of functionality, as well as a well-developed outdoor space solution. Based on this work, we have a good idea of the vibrant cultural heart that the city centre of Tartu will become,’ the Mayor added.
Architect Veronika Valk-Siska, a member of the jury, said that the spatial solution of the winning work was clearly born from the desire to create a place downtown for being in, experiencing, thinking about and discussing culture. ‘The architecture of the building offers a wide range of diverse spatial experiences that are sensitive and meaningful. The prerequisite for the preservation and development of Estonian culture is the awareness of the people about what is happening, the ability and interest of experiencing and understanding the contact between different cultural fields. The winning entry involves the kind of architecture that supports the good cultural awareness and closeness of the people of Tartu.’
Second place and a prize of EUR 40,000 were presented to architectural bureau Kadarik Tüür Arhitektid OÜ (Estonia) for their design "Tarte Tatin" the authors of which are Ott Kadarik, Kerttu Kõll, Kaarel Künnap, Aleksei Petrov, Mats Põllumaa, Mihkel Raev, Indrek Rünkla, Jaanika Sau, Marleen Stokkeby, Aleksandr Špakov, Mihkel Tüür, Maarja Tüür and Eik Hermann.
Third place and a prize of EUR 20,000 were awarded to the architectural bureau Atelier Lorentzen Langkilde Aps (Denmark) for their design "Roheline kultuurikeskus" the authors of which are Kristian Langkilde and Kasper Lorentzen.
Incentive prizes of EUR 10,000 were awarded to the concept designs "Aed" (author: Arkkitehtitoimisto ALA Oy (Finland)), "Puidust siluett" (authors: Unism (Poland) and Narrative Architects (Republic of Korea)) and "The Line and the Dot" (authors: Syrusas, MB IMPLMNT architects (Lithuania)).
The jury also decided to note the concept designs "Maastikuga seotud mälestused" (authors: FIORE ARCHITECTS PC and MYRTO VENIZELOU (Greece)) and "Väike mets" (authors: Studio Akkerhuis Associates, Après la pluie paysagistes (France) and ArchiWorkshop (Republic of Korea)) which are not rewarded with a cash prize, but whose architectural concept deserves special mention.
All works and the minutes of the jury can be viewed on the Tartu website: https://www.tartu.ee/en/downtown-cultural-centre-architectural-design-competition
The top six works can be viewed at the exhibition along Car-Free Avenue.
Composition of the jury: the jury was composed of Urmas Klaas, Mayor of Tartu and Chairman of the Jury; Kristina Pai, Director of the Tartu City Library; Joanna Hoffmann, Director of the Tartu Art Museum; Priit Metsjärv, Head of the Construction Service of the Tartu City Government; Tõnis Arjus, Tartu City Architect; architect Enrique Sobejano (Nieto Sobejano Arquitectos, Spain); Veronika Valk-Siska, Estonian Association of Architects (EAA); architect Tõnu Laigu (QP Arhitektid, Estonia); and landscape architect Martin Allik (MARELD landskapsarkitekter, Estonia/Sweden).
A total of 105 tenders with 107 works were submitted to the international architecture competition for the Downtown Cultural Centre. A total of 28 competition projects were from Estonia and 79 from abroad. Works were submitted from 26 countries. 102 entries went to the jury for evaluation.
The aim of the public one-stage architectural competition, organised in cooperation between the Tartu City Government and the Estonian Association of Architects, was to find the best architectural solution for the construction of the building and outdoor space of the Cultural Centre in the heart of Tartu. The challenge was to come up with a conceptual design for the Cultural Centre, once which included rooms for the Tartu City Library, the Tartu Art Museum, an events centre and other functions supporting the Cultural Centre, and a vibrant and diverse park landscape and human scale public space around it. The building must fit in with the given location and milieu, and create a whole with the urban space along the Emajõgi River.
For more information, please contact Mayor of Tartu Urmas Klaas, tel: +372 513-5145, or City Architect Tõnis Arjus, tel: +372 5304-6148.