Location: Podčetrtek, Slovenia
Project team: Dean Lah, Milan Tomac, Maruša Zupančič, Polona Ruparčič, Anna Kravcova, Zana Starovič, Tomi Maslovarić, Dean Jukić, Darja Zubac, Sabina Sakelšek, Nuša Završnik Šilec, Marko Volf, Esta Matković, Andrej Oblak
Structural engineering: Elea iC
Mechanical services: Nom biro
Electrical planning: Forte Inženiring
Project area: 3,570 sqm
Project year: 2007 – 2010
Photographs: Miran Kambič
The municipal sports hall is located at the main road to Podčetrtek near Terme Olimia spa resort. It is located directly by the road, behind the existing roadside dyke. The main entrance itself is facing the road and is accessible via a connecting path between two driveways at the extreme points of the dyke.
Due to its size, which greatly exceeds the outlay of traditional constructions, it is impossible to look for similarities with indigenous surrounding architecture, but it seems logical to seek the design resemblances with larger facilities of the thermal complex. Especially the Termalija building, which is also located directly by the regional road. A specific dialogue is established between the two facilities. Termalija on one hand appears empty, light and colorful – almost playful, the municipal sports center on the other hand acts rather serious – as a full, heavy, monolithic structure.
Its incidence is, to some extent, connected with the role and purpose it aspires to have in the city. Podčetrtek is a small town, and the new sports hall represents the single local indoor venue. Although primarily intended for sports activities, the main municipal hall will be also used for cultural events with larger number of visitors. It is this dual role that defines the platform for the specific design of the building. Its primary design element is a “red carpet”, which leads visitors to the events in the building. The pathway that connects both driveways on the two extreme points is carved into the existing dyke. It is benefiting from the spatial anomaly and the dyke, thus shielding the entrance from the direct influence of the road. Spatially designed path, bounded by the dyke on one side, is incised in the building on the other side. Presented in vivid colors and attractive shapes it widens in front of the entrance to form a quality – almost square like area. An access platform that gradually embraces the visitors and directs them towards the main hall entrance.
The festivity of the access is in the evenings highlighted by a light ornament on the facade. Perforated cladding covering large window openings and preventing the disturbing, direct impact of sun on the playgrounds throughout a day shines in distinctive flower patterns at dusk. The indoor developments are thus directly reflected on the facade and add to the promotion of events, as well as the attractiveness of the facility.