The design of the new neighbourhood to come from a leading European studio

Nesto is currently our largest project along with the forthcoming ambitious Vydrica project in Bratislava’s historic centre. We have divided the Nesto project into two parts. While the construction of the smaller, southern part, which makes up about a fifth of the site, is already underway, we are still exploring options for the northern part. Its design and connection to the southern part is the subject of an international architectural and urban design competition, the first round of which has just started. From among the studios that have been approached, seven experienced European teams have confirmed their participation. This means that in addition to Slovakia, the future Nesto North could be shaped in France, Denmark, Austria, or Switzerland.

“This is our first international competition of such a nature and scale. The studios we have invited to participate are established as well as progressive. The selection was based on the quality of urban planning in their reference projects and their openness to all things new. This is precisely the approach that this site deserves given its rich history and European significance. The potential of this location on the border of two countries has long been unfulfilled and it is this potential that we are seeking to realise, while creating opportunities for connecting the cross-border areas,” says Zoltán Müller, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Lucron.

We have invited studios with experience and competence for developing a site of this scale to take part in the competition. “The Nesto project involves a really substantial area of almost fifty hectares. Unlike Vydrica, which is being developed in a challenging built-up area, the starting point for Nesto is, so to speak, a blank sheet of paper. Though this is an excellent opportunity, it is also an extremely difficult challenge. The urban planning and the future masterplan for this part of the project will have a fundamental influence on the extent to which the new neighbourhood will be alive and create the quality of life for its residents and visitors,” explains Zoltán Müller.

Six-month process to result in a new masterplan

The key objective of the competition is to provide a comprehensive urban and architectural plan that will take all functions of the area into account – housing, work and commercial spaces, as well as quality public spaces and services, which are often lacking in the expanding district of Petržalka, in particular regarding education and sports. The competition should deliver the best conceptual urban and architectural plan resulting in an urban and architectural study for the Nesto North Masterplan.

The winner will be decided by an expert panel comprising architecture and urban planning professionals, including experts from abroad, representatives of the Bratislava Metropolitan Institute and representatives of the developer.

The first round, which was announced on 18 October, will run until January next year. The panel’s evaluation, to be published in February, will be followed by a second round lasting approximately until April. We are also planning to organise a public presentation once the results are announced. Due to the unpredictable global pandemic situation, some dates are subject to change.

Future trends and a vision for a sustainable neighbourhood

The goal of the competition is to provide a vision for the future of the site, with a 40 to 50-year outlook and with an emphasis on quality of life and the creation of sustainable solutions.

“The question of what the city of the future should look like has been around for a long time and a new challenge has been added recently: what should a city look like after the pandemic? The answer to this question is sought not only by us developers and architects but also by municipalities. Bratislava itself has experienced many changes in terms of mobility and shared economy. Our common challenge today is how to build a quality environment that can withstand the challenges of the future,” adds Zoltán Müller.

A zoning permit has been granted for the first, southern part of the project, accessible from Kopčianska Street and building permits have already been issued for some parts of the site. We started construction work in the autumn of this year. The design studios for the first phase of the Nesto project include, among others, the SIEBERT+TALAŠ studio, and we are approaching a number of experts for specific solutions according to their specialisation in urban planning or public spaces. After selecting the winning Masterplan for the northern part, we plan to entrust specific parts of the project to various experts from relevant fields. “The plain, uniform housing zones of the past are no longer in. Neither are the business zones that yawn with emptiness in the evenings or on weekends. Our goal is to make one feel comfortable when going through Nesto and the scale and design of the individual parts will be adapted to this. Housing, work, leisure and entertainment will mix seamlessly in line with the current trend of a 20-minute neighbourhood,” concludes Zoltán Müller.