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New trees and a quicker way to the metro – Vybíralova renewal as an inspiration for housing estates

The Vybíralova Housing Estate Revitalisation Plan, drawn up by the Prague Institute of Planning and Development and Prague 14 District, has been approved by the Council of the City of Prague. The residents can look forward to new playgrounds, a shorter route to the Černý Most metro station and new parking places.

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“The revitalisation of Vybíralova should serve as an inspiration for other housing estates in Prague,” says Petra Kolínská, Deputy Mayor of Prague.“Almost 40% of the population of Prague lives on housing estates today, so appropriate attention should be paid to their renewal.”

Vybíralova has become a pilot project, where Prague is trialling how to go about revitalising housing estates. The Institute and Prague 14 involved a number of stakeholders in the planning work – tradesmen, local associations and local residents. At the start of planning the revitalisation, IPR learned that various investors were planning 24 projects in the area – from modifications to greenery and building a church to a development project. One of the aims of the Vybíralova project was to balance all the planned projects so that they help improve life on the housing estate.

“It turned out that the Association of Unit Owners is a particularly effective partner. It has years of experience with the execution of investment projects such as building insulation and repair. When other Prague housing estates are revitalised, the association should be treated as a key development partner right from the start, and they should be closely involved in planning” said appreciatively Ondřej Boháč, Director of the Prague Institute of Planning and Development.

Prague 14 District has already approved the revitalisation plan and some simple measures, such as greenery modifications or shrubbery removal are already underway in the public space.

What other changes can the Vybíralova housing estate expect?

Nature and greenery

What the Vybíralova housing estate’s residents appreciate most is the peaceful environment, views of green spaces and the proximity of the countryside. That is why 250 new trees will be planted on the housing estate. It will be ensured that the existing trees can continue to grow and stay healthy for upcoming decades. Low-maintenance meadows will also be created as relaxation spaces. Measures are also being prepared to make better use of rainwater, which will be used to water plants or for play features in children’s playgrounds, and thus will help to improve the climate on the housing estate. An information system about the local flora and fauna will also be created.

Better conditions for pedestrians and cyclists

The distance between the housing estate and the Černý most metro station will be shortened by almost 200 m The previous route zigzagged, needlessly lengthening the distance to the metro. People will save around three minutes of their time when going home, to school or to the metro. Additionally the pavements will be wider, barrier-free and well-lit. There will also be additional alternatives for pedestrians in the form of beaten-earth footpaths. Likewise the road surfaces will be renewed and a sufficiently wide cycle path will be created. A number of one-way streets will be legally passable in both directions for cyclists, and the entire housing estate will be a 30 kmspeed zone. The entry for delivery vehicles will be restricted.

Improved parking

Parked cars will no longer block roads for fire engines or garbage trucks, get in the way on crossroads or block the view at pedestrian crossings. Cars will be parked in parking bays and lots with trees and other greenery. This will result in fewer collisions and potential hazards. In total,140 new parking places will be created.

Local custodians

Right from the start, the revitalisation of the Vybíralova housing estate was planned in collaboration with local residents. Residents will also take part in the management of the renovated estate. Ultimately, every space should have its own custodian. The spaces around the buildings will thus be placed in the hands of or let to local inhabitants (through the Association of Unit Owners) and quiet zones in the inner block will be administered by the city district. Prague’s Technical Administration of Roadways will continue to be responsible for the roads.

Leisure time

Vybíralova is a young housing estate which is home to many young families and adolescents. For this reason, the plan also includes new playgrounds for the youngest residents, and recreational facilities for adolescents and adults. Refreshments will also be available at the leisure sites.

Click here to learn more about the revitalisation plan.

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