Bratislava, 24th September 2021: The Bratislava City Museum in cooperation with the Metropolitan Institute of Bratislava announced an open call for architects and designers to propose solutions for the visitor infrastructure in the Devín Castle site. The aim is to improve the comfort of visitors who want to learn more about this unique historical and cultural monument of national importance and one of the most visited Museum sites.
The Bratislava City Museum (BCM) has been taking a long-term effort to improve the comfort of visitors to the Devín Castle and its accessibility. The current project of resolving the visitor infrastructure at the castle site is a part of that effort and the most important investment project for the Devín Castle in the last few.
“As a part of the project, we have announced an open call for proposals for this solution and, during the next month, we will select the winning contractor. I believe that we will receive first-quality proposals and that the winning proposal will shift the quality of the Devín Castle infrastructure to the top level,” says Zuzana Palicová, appointed manager of the Bratislava City Museum.
When preparing the tender conditions, BCM contacted the Metropolitan Institute of Bratislava (MIB), the city-funded institution in the field of city architecture, urbanism, development, and planning which helped to define and adjust call instructions. The instructions are aimed at finding solution for the information system corresponding with the modern standards which will respect unique symbiosis between history and landscape in the castle site with unique genius loci.
“Organization of architectonic tenders is one of the important tasks performed by MIB. Public spaces and buildings are used by all citizens, so the best solution should be selected for their design. A good tender is based on finding, through an open call and in a short time, services with the optimal ratio of quality and price. Therefore, we were glad to use this expert know-how in cooperation aimed at resolving the visitor infrastructure of the Devín Castle. The cooperation was natural since both public institutions were established by the same entity – the capital of Slovakia – and are dealing with the development of cultural values in the public interest,” says Peter Lényi from the Architectural Competitions Section of the Metropolitan Institute of Bratislava. MIB together with the representatives of BCM and the Union of Graphic Designers will represent the evaluation committee to evaluate not only the price, but also qualitative criteria of particular proposals.
What should be understood under the solution of visitor infrastructure in the Devín Castle?
- The Devín Castle is amongst the most important monuments in Slovakia. Archaeological, historical, and natural elements of particular importance are overlapping in its site. Uniqueness of the castle is based on a unique combination of these elements all of which create a unique place with unrepeatable atmosphere.
- Currently, a comprehensive information and guidance system is missing in the castle. The primary objective of the project is thus its modernization or completion. Moreover, the Devín Castle suffers from the lack of other infrastructure that would provide its visitors sufficient comfort for getting familiar with it. That’s why the project also includes adjustments of the castle site entrance areas and their quality improvements and the development of two relaxation zones extended by small infrastructure and furniture.
What is the subject of the call as such?
- We expect the winning applicant to propose a creative solution for a new information and guidance system in the castle site and the development of additional relaxation infrastructure. Two interconnected parts of the same project unit are concerned here, and the final proposal shall cover both parts.
- For the final proposal, it is also important to take into account the requirements of the modern presentation of a cultural monument in the 21st century and to provide sufficient comfort for all groups of visitors. The BCM’s philosophy is to use principles of inclusion and wheelchair accessibility as a basis, so particular elements should be also accessible by disabled visitors.
It is a long-term goal of BCM to make the historical and natural assets of the Devín Castle available for as broad of an audience as possible, to interpret the assets in a modern manner, and to deepen the unique symbiosis between history and nature in the castle site and its surroundings. This project should be an important step towards meeting the goal.
How to apply?
- By the extended deadline of 11 October 2021, 1:00 PM, send your proposal and portfolio of works to the contact e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org including the definition of your vision, philosophy, and approach to the conceptional solution of the task. All the information required can be found under this link where you can also read the full wording of the call: https://bit.ly/3zvYF94
The call for tender regarding the design of visitor infrastructure in the Devín Castle is a part of the cross-border project of the Interreg Slovakia – Austria Cooperation Programme 2014 – 2020 submitted both by the Bratislava City Museum and the Austrian partner, the municipality of Marchegg. The peer project titled Cultural Bridges through the Morava River has several common goals. One of the “tangible” objectives is removing current problems relating to the technical condition of cultural monuments and their surroundings; this will undoubtedly contribute to the increased attractiveness of the sites. The cultural monuments of our concern are the Devín Castle in Slovakia and the palace in the Austrian municipality of Marchegg. The project accentuates the development and enhancement of cooperation in the border region not only directly between the partners, but also indirectly by involving other players and target groups participating in the project activities such as primary schools and experts from various fields of historical sciences (archaeology, history, paedology, zooarchaeology, numismatics, and so on).