What's mine is yours...

Friday 28 Mar 2014

Disused mine in Walbrzych, Poland finds new life as modern science and art centre

In the former mining town of Walbrzych, Poland is the promise of a new modern science and art centre. A detailed adaptive reuse scheme will see the construction of a cultural complex at the site of The Old Mine, a 4-hectare site with 16 buildings that was once a functioning mine.

The latest visuals for the transformation of The Old Mine have been released by architecture studio Nizio Design International as the project enters its second phase. The wider programme also includes a Ceramics Centre, a Museum of the Future, a Museum of Coal and Mining, and a Geology Museum.

With 16 post-industrial buildings, The Old Mine is one of the most well-preserved developments of its type in Lower Silesia and while some of the structures are protected, the design team has also plumped to restore select buildings that are not. A prime example of this is the former head miner’s building which will be coated in zinc-titanium steel meshwork, rising above the roofline of the building to differentiate it from the other volumes onsite.

Nizio Design International’s concept will also see a galvanised steel ‘gangway’ inserted as the main entranceway to the complex, modelled on an underground mine corridor. Temporary thematic exhibitions will be displayed at this access point, providing background information to visitors as they move through the core of the cultural complex.

External areas have also been utilised as part of the development with plans to transform a former mine waste dump into an accessible green area for families with a playground for small children. Engaging play areas featuring large tubes, swings on chains, wooden structures, slides and climbing nets will be installed as will an open-air auditorium for film screenings.

An earlier article on the transformation of The Old Mine can be viewed here.

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