stranded boat

PaPs 2005 – metamorphosis – the stranded boat
transformation of the piazza kralja petra i, pancevo

the project kicked-off the collaboration of PaPs and refraction team at public spaces in pancevo:

  • defining the polygon and the extent of intervention, initial conversation with potential participants and relevant institutions
  • writing project and participating to so pancevo for financial support for cultural projects
  • precisely defining activities, resumption of conversation with institutions and participants
  • realization at the plateau in front of the museum
  • postproduction (making a study, documentary video and cocktail-party, etc)

previous state

the central square in the city of pancevo was established in 18th century when the first military buildings were built. in the beginning, there was a big market with an intensive circulation of people, cabs and goods. in the middle of it was the big cross that dominated the site. later, administrative, private and public buildings were made. the most important was the town hall that was built in 1833. with time, half of the square was rearranged into park, and finally the park extended to the whole square. the function of the square changed following its modifications into park. today park is used as transitive relation and a place for rest. beside grass fields, green and benches it does not have any contents. there are almost no activities. it lost its purpose to be meeting place. in the pattern of paths and green fields, one part sets apart. it is the piazza in front of former town hall, which is museum today. green fields and trees form the other three edges. the piazza has 1150m². stronger communication paths are in the shorter sides, while the central area is rarely used. benches and street lamps are the only urban furniture.

project aimed to explore some possible ways of improving the quality of use of the chosen piazza. during the period of three weeks different temporary interventions were made. each week a new space modification has been done and was followed with the appropriate happening that emphasized it. innovative urban furniture was supposed to contribute to transformation of the site in the artistic and in functional way and to raise the quality of use of the piazza. it was a frame for various activities and enabled an interactive usage of the elements and space. the user finally had a freedom to organize space, as he wanted. happenings were realized in various time of a day in order to affect different groups of users and to satisfy more of their needs. all collected information about community needs and reactions will be elaborated in dissertation after the completion of all phases of the project. those data should be very useful resources for the similar projects in the future or as line of direction for further developing of the urban spaces in pancevo.

description of interventions

after comprehensive research of necessities of citizens of pancevo and careful analyzing the data, we set up the criteria for choosing the type and volume of interventions. space transformations resulted with the increase of ambient attractiveness and they made the place more pleasant and cozy. new contents were used as frame for new activities, which motivated users to spend more time at the piazza in an amusing environment. inspiration: pancevo is seated on the mouth of river tamis into danube. sailing and river transport are significant features of town’s history. since the 18th century, pancevo has been very important commercial point for merchant ships that sailed through europe using danube and its confluent rivers. lighthouses, nets, ships, goods, pier, anglers’ cottages and big storehouses were authentic characteristics of town’s silhouette. those motives were used as inspiration for modeling street furniture and designing public spaces. this kind of approach enabled very attractive implementation of tradition into modern design.

assesment of interventions

space transformations resulted with the increase of ambient attractiveness and they made the place more pleasant and cozy. new contents were used as frame for new activities, which motivated users to spend more time at the piazza in an amusing environment. during three weeks of project, there were over 100 participants and numerous public and other users. the site and people were animated with many actions and that led to rising of public awareness about problems and importance of public spaces. another step towards artistic approach in urban design was made while values of architectural and urban profession were promoted. big achievement was made in linking students, experts, local government, institutions, firms and artists. collaboration enabled better results and higher quality of interventions. contribution to a good result gave also a multi discipline approach. participation of local government and relevant institutions was very important to the successful realization, especially after the mayor and the first architect supported the whole idea.


pancevo got better-arranged space, new contents and new activities. representative square became more attractive which improved impression that town maintained. the level of awareness of local community related to the importance of urban design. preferable directions for further development of urban spaces were defined, paying attention to integration of artistic, ecological and social values. local community got revitalized place that accommodated their requests. town management got the project for arrangement the piazza and insight to public opinion. all participants connected themselves in a logic hierarchy of communication. in addition to this, the exemplar for similar project is established. students of architecture that was included in project got the opportunity to practice their knowledge and to learn from their own experience.

image / gallery

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