The main characteristic of Kaunas city is its unique location in the junction of two rivers. However public spaces in the waterfronts are not used and not accessible. Main goal of the project is to connect two rivers and extend the old town streets towards water.
Historically the project area had long strip plot system, later destroyed by industrial buildings of Lituanica shoe factory. Nevertheless both urban structures are important and are remained: the factory buildings and the narrow plots. New masterplan pushes city towards riverfront public spaces: park blends with urban mix use neighborhoods. Three major pedestrian routes are created leading from the transport node towards the castle: first – urban oldtown scale street; second – commercial passage with both sides shopping, connecting plazas; third – waterfront boulevard and the music pier – The Balcony. The Balcony becomes a place for the citizens, for cultural events, attraction point for tourists.
High density, diversity of program, mix of housing types, open and private spaces, continuous public space structure are the qualities that create inviting, cosy, comfortable and easy accessible living environment in the Lituanica territory, just on the banks of river Neris.
Type: Workshop-competition, Conversion of former Lituanica shoe factory
Location: Kaunas, Lithuania
Client: Baltisches Haus, in partnership with Kaunas City Council
Area: 11 hectares
Date: 2009 December
Prize: Selected for the second phase
Collaboration with: Karres en Brands
Team: Bart Brands, Charlotte Ernst, Algimantas Neniskis, Milda Jusaite, Justina Muliuolyte, Tadas Jonauskis