Modernization works in one of the largest and most popular parks in the capital are gaining momentum. The dismantling of the small reservoirs in the pond area is nearing completion. At the end of last year, entrepreneurs withdrew 13 thousand. m² concrete. Currently, work is underway to give them a new shape, following which a new natural water system with areas of rush vegetation will be created.
Intensive revitalization activities also take place in the area of the so-called Wielka Polana and Finnish houses, including the house of Ryszard Kapuściński.
Water in the spotlight
The disappearance of concrete from the Mokotowskie pole is the result of design assumptions aimed at caring for the nature of the park, increasing biodiversity and water retention. It is also a symbolic moment, indicating both the ongoing efforts to naturalize water areas in the Warsaw Park complex, but also a significant voice in the global discussion on the sustainable management of water resources in urban spaces.
“Significant activity in the field of pro-ecological solutions is shaping the water system. This system is not limited to water reservoirs, but involves the formation of diverse aquatic ecosystems. Its task is not only to support the recreational function of the park, to create living places for animals, but also to improve the local microclimate through the retention, infiltration and evaporation of rainwater (equalization of temperatures extremes, binding of harmful dust, increased humidity, etc.). The main tank was designed as water all year round based on filter media made up of aggregates and plants, which purify the water mechanically, chemically and biologically.
In addition to the modernization of the existing reservoir, including the backwaters, the project also foresees the construction of two ponds in designated areas for dogs and ponds in the biocenotic garden. – explains Agnieszka Radziszewska, architect of the WXCA studio and co-creator of the Pole Mokotowskie park revitalization project.
A home for man, a home for nature
The concept of park development proposed by studio WXCA is based on the idea that it is “(…) a process, not an event – a continuous evolution of natural systems and the variability of social activities. The park is a place for everyone: people, but also plants, animals, the elements; at any time of the day, week and year. The park consists of two shelter houses emblematic: the House of Man and the House of Nature, whose spaces intertwine like networks. And the area “between” these houses is an area of a biocenotic landscape, consciously built, with characteristics that serve both man and nature”.
The approach emphasizing the symbiosis of two worlds, two “homes” seems to be crucial when it comes to a project concerning one of the most important parks in Warsaw. Undoubtedly, Pole Mokotowskie, besides its natural value, is also a social and cultural phenomenon. It is a privileged place, open to diversity and free, where the mode of operation is determined by the inhabitants themselves through their activities.
“It was shaped equally by the actions of designers from above and by the bottom-up social process. It is the main source of popularity and acceptance among users, as well as its identity compared to other green spaces in Warsaw. – notes Paweł Grodzicki, architect of the WXCA studio and co-creator of the Pole Mokotowskie park revitalization project. And he adds: “Therefore, we felt that more than spectacular spatial activities, sensitively stimulated evolution and well-planned ‘acupuncture’ were necessary. And it was this approach that became the basis of our design strategy.”
Awareness of the importance of the park within the Capital community could be a burden for the project team, and certainly quite a challenge.
“The most important thing was to design a space accessible to all, while respecting the memory of the people associated with this place. Pole Mokotowskie has been an important place for Warsaw residents since the summer. “By All” is treated much more broadly, however, and means that the design’s attention is as much focused on the human subject as it is on animals, plants and the elements. Thanks to the proposed solutions, the park will be an attractive place at different times of the day, week, year and weather conditions. The source of the park’s identity and attractiveness, its distinctiveness from other parks in Warsaw, is a unique combination of consciously introduced compositional and program elements as well as spontaneous activities and activities, local, individual and group – explains Agnieszka Radziszewska.
The resulting diversity, synergistic blending and overlapping of global and local, top-down and bottom-up processes constitute the potential of Pole Mokotowskie as a place. As a result of specific development processes, Pole Mokotowskie Park, regardless of its natural value, has become a dynamic social and cultural phenomenon. This phenomenon is treated as a development asset. »