The New Urban Edge
Our proposal for the National Concert Hall in Vilnius is conceived of as an expanded threshold between the city and the site. The project is lifted off the ground to form a softer urban edge that allows functions to flow in, preserving the integrity of the existing natural landscape. An open interface is created through a floating podium that acts as a shared platform for various institutions and people to come together on an ‘urban foyer’ that overlooks the city. The translucent skin of the building further blurs the distinction between inside and outside, allowing for discretion of functions contained within whilst still remaining participatory.
The Public Route
The deep plan is articulated through different devices of connectivity, to create spaces for varying social interactions- that celebrate the idea of the individual within the group. Through the folding and overlapping of planes you see each floor cannot be experienced in isolation and acts in continuum with the other. The structuring of the circulation allows for individuals to find their own path through the building. These spaces of movement also become spaces of gathering that take on an urban scale and form a continuous unimpaired route. The transient nature of the buildings skin also slowly immerses the visitor into the programme allowing for gradual visual and acoustic acclimatization into its layered spaces.
The idea of adapting the large floor plate to create varying experiences is further explored in the creation of “buildings” within the building; where the scale is broken down, such that areas of circulation form more expansive interactive zones and areas of specific functions becoming more contained private zones within the grid.
Stacking of Spaces
The exterior form of the building is defined by two vertical concert halls connected by the floating horizontal band of the podium. This shared pedestal forms a front and back to control and direct flow of movement, while the grand and small halls, resting above, remain unidirectional and function as pivots that both pull people towards them and allow them to enjoy the city’s panorama.
The north facade of the project, along this urban veranda, permits easy access to the entrance lobby, shops, restaurant, expo and small hall. Accessed at -1 level, this entrance becomes flush with the proposed square on the east side allowing it to be used as a public amphitheater when necessary. The Grand hall is planned in such a way that it receives 70% of its audience closer to the stage level, with access at ground level, conducive for easy public movement. The Grand Hall, Small Hall and Rehearsal hall are located away from each other for natural insulation but are internally connected at the stage level via production and performers zones for ease of services. Each auditorium level is linked to generous foyers and bathrooms that are evenly distributed across all floors. Balconies connect to the public lobby on one side and audience reception area on the other through grand stairways that seamlessly function as spillover spaces.