Recently the results of the international competition 'Nowa Huta of the Future' were announced in the municipality of Krakow, Poland. The international jury awarded 2nd prize to the proposal 'Nowa Huta: rediscovered European urbanity', designed by BASIC CITY A+U in collaboration with Felixx landscape architects and Magdalena Szczypka and Ania Molenda (mo.st).
'Nowa Huta of the Future' was an international competition for the development of programme and spatial vision of socio-economic stimulation of the east part of Kraków, Poland. The site covers an area of over 5,000 ha, being one of the largest investment opportunities in Europe.
The competition aimed to show how spatial, social, economic and infrastructural visions will develop. It is fostered by the reuse of the unattended infrastructure, feasible remediation of the polluted land and refined relation between built land, nature and agriculture.
The plan offers all at once: urban ambient, proximity of the genuine nature and production landscape. Nowa Huta should become a city where the entrepreneurial spirit and optimism are combined with active and healthy lifestyle in close relation to the nature.
BASIC CITY A+U proposed reinventing the non-operating industrial land of the Arcelor Mittal steel industry complex into a seedbed of the new age industries. Exploitation of the close relation to the nature and the nearby river landscape, fresh food supply from the local agriculture production fields and a variety of recreational activities add the distinctive quality to the plan. In addition revitalizing the existing historic villages would preserve the historic ambient.
As a result the scheme saw Nowa Huta as a substantially independent urban entity with the spatial qualities distinct to its bigger neighbour Krakow. Its size is relative to the spatial composition of scattered urban areas and large agricultural areas which will offer many, currently hidden qualities. Recognition and employment, as well as the demonstration of those qualities through a coherent and functional spatial framework have become crucial parts of the proposed plan.
The vitality of every city in such a situation depends on its ability to find its latent qualities and reinforce its existing unique identities. The project optimally uses its material resources and challenges its human potential to perform therefore securing a long-term success of its development. "This was a fundamental competition for the future of Kraków not only due to the scale of the project but also its level of difficulty", Jacek Majchrowski, mayor of Kraków.