A green, a blue and a historical urban space anchor the new 400,000 m2 masterplan transforming the old Imperial Shipyard in Gdansk, Poland.
“We have worked with three urban spines in the new city, all placed strategically in areas that also had a significant role in the Shipyard days. They will be identity marks and help secure diversity in the masterplan,” Lead Landscape Designer at Henning Larsen, Salka Kudsk, explains.
The old harbor dock will be preserved as a historical reference to the Imperial Shipyard but is transformed into a swimming pool with purified water. The Dock is the spine of the ‘blue’ space.
The green spine, The Park, is a sheltered urban park with willow trees that cleanse the ground. A large re-creative space for visitors and residents.
The third spine, The Plaza, has a historical reference and is placed close to the square where the signing of the 1980 Gdansk Agreement took place and brought fundamental change to the Communist political structure. We will establish a public plaza, a unifying feature, for public viewings of movies etc.
The three central spaces are tied together by crossing connections; a new harbor front secures a connection to the rest of Gdansk with a sea level rise barrier serving as a furniture for all kinds of usage. A lively inner streetscape secures retail options, and a green strip with hills shields a local highway and at the same time allows for movement and activity.
We are introducing courtyards amongst the different blocks, a break with the many fenced areas in Gdansk, and in the alleys between houses, we’re establishing ‘pocket parks’ with sculpture gardens and studios for artists.
Everything is built around the existing constructions; old halls will house street food, and we are preserving old museums, cranes and grid constructions as well as reusing materials. This is all done in close collaboration with local architects that are experts in preserving and knows the story of the area thoroughly.
“There is so much soul to grasp in this area. It is important to us not to alienate the area for the rest of the city. Everyone in Gdansk has a connection to the old Shipyard, and it is our opinion that urban spaces should be for everyone. We want the citizens to uses it,” Salka Kudsk says.