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Competition: Dukla sports centre, Pardubice

Pardubice

The City of Pardubice in the Czech Republic has launched an open international competition to redevelop its Dukla arena (Deadline: 4 July)

The anonymous competition seeks a long-term phased masterplan to transform an ageing 85,000m² athletics track into a multifunctional sports complex, expected to complete in 2030.

The Socialist-Realist style arena was constructed after the Second World War as a home venue for local athletics team Red Star Pardubice. Today it hosts several sports clubs and receives around 30,000 visitors every year.

The upgraded city-centre facility will focus on track and field, basketball and handball, featuring a 250 million koruna ($10.4 million) indoor athletics hall and a 2,500-capacity multi-use arena.

Accommodation for gymnastics, martial arts and other sports will also be included, as well as outdoor pitches, a restaurant, offices and physiotherapy areas.

City mayor Martin Charvát said: ‘We have a unique opportunity here to develop a site with a total area of 85,000m² in order to create a multifunctional sports complex of national importance, which will be open year-round not only for top-level sportsmen and women, but also for the general public.

Pardubice

Pardubice

Dukla sports arena contest site

‘The complex will completely revitalise this partly derelict location – a large and valuable site close to the city centre, offering excellent transport access and strong potential for development.

‘This represents a unique opportunity for us to create a sports facility that is not merely functional, but also showcases high-quality architecture. A modern European city like Pardubice deserves no less than this.’

Proposals must set out a framework showing locations and positions for each component of the complex.

Deputy mayor and project co-ordinator Helena Dvorácková commented: ‘It’s important for us to be absolutely clear on where exactly each component of the complex will be located. That will give us the general layout, and then the individual pieces in the “jigsaw puzzle” will be put in place gradually over a period of time.’

She continued: ’The order of priority for which parts of the complex are built first, and which will follow later, will depend on agreement among the key stakeholders, including political representatives, sports professionals, and the general public.’

The two-stage anonymous contest is open to teams based within the European Union. There is no entry fee. Judges include Charvát and Dvorácková, and Czech architects Jitka Ressová, Ondrej Teplý and Edita Lisecová.

The winner – set to be announced in October – will receive a 900,000 koruna prize ($37,000) and a design contract worth 12 million koruna ($500,000) for the masterplan and first phase featuring an indoor athletics hall.

How to apply

Submissions deadline

5pm local time (GMT+2) on 4 July

Contact details

Pavla Pannová

Tel: +420 466 859 151

Email: duklasportovni@mmp.cz

View the competition website for more information

Aberdeen Sports Village case study: Q&A with James Grimley

Grimley, a director at Reiach and Hall Architects, discusses how the practice set about upgrading a similar athletics centre in Aberdeen

Reiach and Hall Architects

Reiach and Hall Architects

James Grimley

How did you combine aesthetics with the functional requirements of different sports in your regeneration of the Aberdeen Sports Village?

We made an analogy with architecture and athletes: good buildings, like good athletes, should be disciplined and rigorous. However, the athletes we remember affectionately also have flair and personality. We took this idea as an inspiration for the building. It is rigorously planned and to a large extent the form and massing of the building is a result of the specific dimensional requirements of the various sports, combined with the constraints of the site. But it also contains many gestures and elements relating to sport and play: a large 6m-high by 104m-long steel truss that holds up the floors of the fitness suite, dance studio and weightlifting area is a muscular gesture that represents strength, while the slender structural elements of the walls and roof aim to represent elegance and finesse. The 210m-long east elevation has polycarbonate panels with colours sampled from photographs of the sky above the site, but also provides an uplifting quality of diffuse light to the athletics hall.

Scotland

Scotland

Source: Image by Ioana Marinescu

Aberdeen Sports Village by Reiach and Hall Architects

What material, structural, planning and other techniques are available to architects?

Aberdeen Sports Village was built using the same technology as modern warehouses and supermarkets. We viewed the technology with enthusiasm rather than solely as an enforced consequence of an economic budget. The sports industry has been at the forefront of the development of lightweight modern materials used to make rackets, shoes and clothes in the hope of improving the performance of modern athletes. In much the same way lightweight, light-transmitting materials can be used to improve the performance of new buildings. We can now produce brightly lit, inspiring spaces that are economic and quick to build.

How might competitors set about promoting greater openness and public use of the Dukla site?

Since ancient times sports centres have been important civic buildings, usually located just outside city centres. Because they play a culturally important role, visual and physical accessibility are apposite. At Aberdeen a generous entrance portico provides a covered area for people waiting for their team mates. The entrance is extensively glazed and has large sliding windows, allowing the south-facing café to open out on to the public street. Internally the building has a high degree of transparency and visual interconnectivity. For example, if someone is coming to play football, they will see the other sports on offer as they make their way to and from the football hall.

Scotland

Scotland

Source: Image by Ioana Marinescu

Aberdeen Sports Village by Reiach and Hall Architects

Scotland

Scotland

Source: Image by Ioana Marinescu

Aberdeen Sports Village by Reiach and Hall Architects

Scotland

Scotland

Source: Image by Ioana Marinescu

Aberdeen Sports Village by Reiach and Hall Architects