Location: Zemitani, Riga, Latvia
Year and status: 2018 – in the development and building stages
Team: Zane Tetere – Sulce, Dace Bula, Zane Legzdina, Alvis Petrovskis, Eva Heidingere – Jukama, Kaspars Broks
3D graphics: Olga Ponomarjova, Sergejs Zarovnijs
Every neighbourhood deserves its own landmark. So far, Riga’s Grīziņkalns is a largely residential area with patches of an industrial past and a still-functioning liquor factory lining the railway. It has no true beating heart. Our vision for a former factory building is to transform it into a lively hub for residents, employees and visitors who arrive on foot, by train, bike or car. Clearly visible from the Zemitāni bridge, the Grīziņdārzs mixed use quarter would serve as the neighbourhood’s business card.
As a true multi-purpose space, level one of Grīziņdārzs will feature bars and restaurants, while levels two and three will house offices and coworking areas. With rooftop terraces trending in cities from Bangkok to LA, their potential in Riga is yet to be fulfilled. At Grīziņdārzs, rooftop gardens and terraces are an intrinsic element on levels three and four, providing employees with a chance to swap the office chair for a comfortable spot outdoors. The rooftop bar on level five is another important element to encourage socialising, boost team spirit and employee wellbeing. After all, the workplace is where we spend so much of our lives.
From 1938 to 1988 the building served as a knitwear factory. While keen to give it a new lease of life, we thought it important to respect the building’s history. Some remaining features allowed us to play around with our creativity. Thus a water reservoir beneath the courtyard will become an underground drinking hole. And pavements are designed to resemble knitting patterns.