Heart of the City, Kaliningrad
The project includes the “Castle", not material but perceivable. In the collective memory, in the memories of what has never been seen, there is a silhouette, an elusive image, and a subtle sense of presence. Today's invisible presence is materializing in the Castle silhouette formed by a translucent surface, and formed by key points of the material history of the castle, its high-rise dominants. It is the “Ghost Castle”, the memory of the image. At the same time, the cover made of ETFE membrane puts together all parts of the complex and contains new public spaces - the Upper Square and Public Promenade.
From the bottom to the top, the complex is formed by series of public spaces, which offer intense sensations by contemplation of the elements of the complex: archaeological sites, the cover, the walkways, the volumes, and the platform of the Upper Square. The transparency of the cover and the permeability of the whole structure of the complex provide natural light for the city square on the north side. Starting at the bottom as a combination of archaeological sites and new elements, the interior space is emerging by growing out of the foundations of the old Castle. Moving along the boardwalk of the Public Promenade through the interstices between the volumes of the complex, we find ourselves at the top of the area, with the city panorama opening on all sides. This “Royal Mountain” becomes a spectacular new public space for Kaliningrad residents and visitors.
A zone for archaeological research is left at the ground level, the level containing foundations of the castle. It is the part of the complex, which functions as an archaeological site, where archaeological excavations continue regardless of the construction and operation of the complex. With the development of excavation, parts of the zone could later be transformed into museum spaces and attached to the museum part of the complex. The archaeological part provides material presence of the historical objects and their interaction with the public spaces.
Architects: Vladimir Belskiy, Andrey Dolotov, Tatiana Tyushniakova
Location: Kaliningrad, Russia