Bjarke Ingels wins competition to design Prague concert hall

The city of Prague is to have the first concert hall to be built in the Czech Republic in more than a century.

The 50,000 sq m Vltava Philharmonic Hall was designed by Danish architect Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), beating off competition from Diller Scofidio + Renfro, Snøhetta, Ateliers Jean Nouvel and David Chipperfield Architects, among others.

The hall will be located at the intersection between the Vltava riverfront and Prague’s Cultural Mile, and will connect the Old Town with the Holešovice neighbourhood’s art scene.

The venue ascends from the Vltava square in a way reminiscent of “eighth, quarter, half and whole notes”, according to Brian Yang, a partner in BIG.

There will also be public plazas under the hall itself, and the roofs are a continuation of the plaza at the foot of the building.

The structure is described by BIG as a “three-dimensional public space – part musical instrument, part logistical machine, part topography, part sculpture”.

Bjarke Ingels, BIG’s founder, said: “The Vltava Philharmonic Hall is composed as a meandering journey from riverbank to rooftop. Public flows and belvedere plazas unite the city life of Prague to the music within. Its halls are formed for sight, fine-tuned for sound and orchestrated for functionality and connectivity.

“From this rhythmic structure, a symphony of colonnades and balconies extend as platforms for public life. Expressive yet pragmatic, the hall will form a landmark for Prague, from river to roof.”

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