wolnica square

competition for the redevelopment of Wolnica Square in Cracow, Poland
II prize
Marcin Jojko,Bartek Nawrocki, Józef Kiszka, Tomasz Berezowski, Krzysztof Czech, Monika Kowaluk, Grzegorz Ostrowski

Plac Wolnica (Wolnica Square) is an important place within the plan of Cracow. Among neighbouring squares – Nowy and Cracow Main Square – vibrant with life day and night, the old Kazimierz main square has just been looking for its own formula and attractiveness, which could attract here visitors and tourists. The problem of today public spaces is not an architectural discourse only, but primarily a sociological problem depending on the politics, institutions, media, and local communities creating the contemporary culture and city life. Therefore the search for solutions in the spatial (architectural) domain may be only an add-on, because a broadly understood public space should be analysed as a process programmed in time (‘happening’) and only situated in a given space (‘on the square’).


In the modern world the parameter of time is much more important and valuable than the spatial one, which remains only a background for the former. Hence a real solution for the task set to create ‘an idea for the square’ is first of all its future programme formula, which as the only can make that the square will become an alternative for the crowded shopping malls, emanating their artificiality and kitch. The project is aimed at maintaining and appropriate respecting of the history traces – designing only indispensable and modest interventions leaving plenty of room for interpretation. Interventions, which at the same time will enable a diverse use of the square space via a rich offer of events.