We have designed Nesto differently. From the very beginning, we have been thinking about it in a way that is not common in Slovakia. We want Nesto to become a 20-minute neighbourhood and we consider the fact that we are building it on a greenfield to be a great advantage. Tangible results of this approach will include our square in Nesto South, of which we are immensely proud.
We have many reasons to believe that Nesto’s southern square will become the best square in the whole of Slovakia, and here are five of them.
1. A square is not usually part of the standard
It is by no means common for a real square to be part of new development in Slovakia. Even if projects count with some public space, it is more about following the regulations rather than an effort to create a new and lively space for the public. This then often results in sad little squares with no life. The square in Nesto will be surprisingly spacious and equipped to fulfil all its functions very well.
2. One square, many functions
Our square will be composed of several connected parts. A spacious open zone is gradually narrowing down as we progress inside Nesto and green islands with private corners and trees are being added. Both parts have specific characteristics.
The open part of the square will be able to accommodate various urban events. We have designed the square for a multitude of scenarios from larger open-air musical events through seasonal markets and food festivals to a Christmas ice rink for the public. And if people have had enough, they can move to the more intimate corners of the square. Either to the narrowed-down continuation of the main space with trees and seating or into the “bays” along the sides of the square, which are ideal for get-togethers, picnics, barbecues, and other social events.
3. It is where it is supposed to be
We could have placed the first square in Nesto anywhere else where it would be easier and make it smaller and cheaper. But we planned it where it makes sense. It will become a gateway to Nesto from Kopčianska street. Open arms that welcome, invite and also treat people.
From a generous open area, it gradually changes to a more intimate space towards the inside, and it connects to a green recreational promenade even further into the “inland.” You may not even notice that in just a few steps you got from an urban atmosphere to the embrace of nature. To the sides, the square is also changing organically into more intimate but still open courtyards, which reflect a different kind of needs of the inhabitants and visitors. Nesto is located where it is supposed to be, and this also applies to its square.
4. Each stone makes sense
We have had the luxury to be able to think about every detail in the square. We were not restricted by streets, borders of the public space or utilities. We designed it to work perfectly. Even in the future. Even after it is finished, our square will be open to changes and ready to evolve together with Nesto.
We spent a long time designing it. We kept looking for things to improve. And that is why everything you bump into in the square has its function. Or two. An island in the more intimate part of the square can also serve as a small platform for the audience during events.
All buildings surrounding the square are set in the space in a way that helps prevent the open area from overheating. Natural component parts include water retention solutions and green shelters around the buildings to protect people from heat and rain. There is also some seating in the shade with water sprayers to help during the summer. Children will enjoy an open fountain that they are allowed to step into.
Although our square will be built to fulfil the needs of 21st century people, we tried to bring back the traditional function into this public space. In the past, squares served as a meeting place for neighbours, city inhabitants and people from the vicinity. Today, their functions are fulfilled by community centres, various hubs, social networks, and the internet. This is precisely what we wanted to achieve in the first place. We wanted the high-quality functions of a modern public space to come with the side effect of life.
The best square for all
Our square will be a high-quality public space. And we believe that its mission will go beyond Nesto’s borders. We want it to become a lively place for residents and visitors, and we do everything to ensure that. So that it makes sense not only to Nesto inhabitants but also to people from Petržalka, the rest of Bratislava as well as neighbours from the Austrian border region.