Prague is developing the Na Františku waterfront. Residents are also involved
“The Na Františku area could be an extremely attractive part of Prague. It is situated between the waterfront and the St Agnes-Haštalská quarter with its romantic lanes. Unfortunately it is now so neglected and full of traffic that visitors tend not to seek it out,” said the Prague IPR Director, Petr Hlaváček. Since Prague was flooded in 2002 and 2013, the road along the Dvořákovo embankment has been in very poor condition. Prague is now preparing to repair it – and will also restore the pavements and adjacent public spaces, including the park. “The upcoming repair of the road presents us with an opportunity to undertake a comprehensive transformation of the waterfront,” added Hlaváček.
The city is also involving residents in the preparation of conceptual studies, which set out a new urbanistic and operational plan for the Dvořákovo embankment. During the first stage they can complete a questionnaire, explaining how satisfied they are with the present situation, what they would like to change or how they would like to use the public areas in the future. The questionnaire is available until February 5th 2016 on www.spolupraze.cz/nafrantisku. In addition, on-site inspections will take place on the waterfront and citizens will be able to share their opinions on the future of the embankment between January and February at the information centre, where they can talk to urbanists and architects.
Do you want to become involved in the planned renovation of the public spaces at Na Františku?
Contribute by completing a short questionnaire on www.spolupraze.cz/nafrantisku
“Over the next few years, the section of the waterfront between Čechový and Štefánikový bridges will be the subject of different projects, which IPR Prague intends to take into account and to coordinate when preparing its plan. These also include changes to the traffic routes along the embankment and opening up the St Agnes Convent gardens, which is being prepared by the National Gallery,” said Petr Hlaváček. The area on which the study focuses is unique in that very few people live there permanently. During the 1930s, Dvořákovo embankment underwent the final wave of redevelopment, when the area made room for large public buildings. “The main players in this district are municipal and international institutions – the Na Františku hospital is located here, as well as the National Gallery, the Law Faculty and the Ministry of Industry and Trade. We intend to work together with representatives from these bodies in preparing the conceptual studies,” added Hlaváček.
Dvořákovo embankment is situated between the popular Rašínový embankment and the less frequented Alšový embankment. It does have a waterfront area, which currently serves as a dock for boat trips. The name of the embankment is peculiar in itself. Historically, this district of Prague has been called “Na Františku”. However the actual technical construction, in other words the roadway, water management system and embankment wall, with ramps, was named Dvořákovo embankment. The buildings still have the Na Františku address, but the sign on their façade bears the name Dvořákovo embankment. By meeting with residents we may also discover which of the names they want to use for the district in the future.
Why is the waterfront not also being renovated?
The conceptual studies also build on a parallel plan to improve the facilities along the waterfront (furnishings + wc, using the vaults). However the waterfront will not be involved in the structural changes that relate directly to the repair of the roadway, but rather in the context of the new port, which has yet to be designed. The waterfront is being included ideologically and conceptually.
Why has no architectural competition been announced?
TSK is the administrator and investor for most of this area, and it has its own designer. He had already been selected before IPR became involved in the project. The role of IPR therefore lies primarily in the conceptual coordination of known planned investments by those organisations operating along the embankment. All the stakeholders, without exception, must agree to hold a competition and to make substantial changes to the embankment area and funding must be found for the works decided on the basis of the competition results, otherwise there is no point in holding it.