Ostrava Concert Hall, Czech Republic

The new concert hall is being developed next to the House of Culture in Ostrava, Czech Republic. Credit: Janacek Philharmonic Ostrava/koncertnisal.cz.

The Ostrava Concert Hall will have a capacity of 1,300 seats. Credit: Janacek Philharmonic Ostrava/koncertnisal.cz.

The construction of the new concert hall is scheduled to start in September 2022. Credit: Janacek Philharmonic Ostrava/koncertnisal.cz.

The new concert hall will be built in parallel with the renovation of the existing building of the Maison de la culture. Credit: Janacek Philharmonic Ostrava/koncertnisal.cz.

The Ostrava Concert Hall is a proposed new facility with a seating capacity of 1,300 in the city of Ostrava, Czech Republic.

The new concert hall will be built on the campus of the existing House of Culture, one of the largest cultural venues in Ostrava, which has been operating since 1961.

It will provide state-of-the-art performance space for the Janacek Philharmonic Ostrava, which is one of the country’s leading symphony orchestras.

The construction of the new concert hall should start in September 2022 and should be completed in 2025. The project will be developed simultaneously with the reconstruction of the House of Culture.

The estimated total cost of building the concert hall and renovating the House of Culture is CZK 2.6 billion ($122 million).

Ostrava Concert Hall location and design details

The Ostrava Concert Hall will be built next to and as an extension of the House of Culture, located at 28 října Street in Ostrava, Czech Republic. Overhanging the existing building of the Maison de la Culture, the new concert hall will look like a violin case or spaceship when viewed from above.

The hall will rise behind the existing building and face the existing Milada Horáková Park, towards the north side, to reduce street noise from the south side.

The design plan calls for retaining the building’s original entrance while creating another entrance hovering above the plaza, leading to a sky-lit lobby of the Concert Hall.

The room will have smaller sections and part of the auditorium will be located behind the stage. The seating arrangement will resemble a vineyard.

The scenography will ensure good visibility. The distance between the stage and the furthest seats will be approximately 28m.

Mobile panels will provide the flexibility needed to accommodate non-musical events. The zinc facade will be complemented by neutral colored low iron glass panels.

The design incorporates glass walls and skylights, which will allow an adequate amount of natural light to enter the lobby during the day. The skylights will illuminate the hall and the park next to the building at night.

Acoustic design at Ostrava Concert Hall

Another important aspect of the concert hall is its acoustic design. The neutral acoustic environment will provide a quality setting for the orchestra.

To be installed 15m above the stage, a sound reflector will reflect the sound with an ideal delay for live musicians and the public.

The panels of the concert hall will be made using maple wood to further improve the sound quality.

Details of the renovation of the Maison de la Culture

The Maison de la Culture will be renovated, retaining the original building and its historic character. A connecting corridor will be built between the two buildings to facilitate the circulation of visitors, staff and artists.

The project development will include a new 475-seat chamber hall within the existing building.

A central wing in the existing building will be used to accommodate dressing rooms for orchestra members, conductors and soloists. Additionally, the renovated facility will include offices, tuning rooms, rooms dedicated to storing musical instruments, and rehearsal rooms for orchestra members.

A recording studio will also be built to meet the requirements of the Janacek Philharmonic Ostrava and for other commercial uses.

Additional amenities at Ostrava Concert Hall

A new 300-seat educational center will be built on the site previously occupied by the Cinéma pour Public Demanding. It will function as an independent space focused on music, theater and art workshops.

In addition, the renovation will transform the Art Cinema into a commercial conference hall, which can accommodate up to 200 people.

Facilities such as a café with a view of the park and a lounge for around 40 people will also be created.

The entry of abundant natural light inside the building through the glazed walls and skylights should reduce the consumption of non-renewable energy.

Planned energy efficiency measures also include the use of insulating glass with a vapor deposited layer to reduce the building’s heat transfer coefficient.

Options such as closed and open heat pump systems for heating and cooling are also considered to minimize the building’s overall carbon footprint. These systems should provide better air quality inside the building and reduce heat loss and electricity consumption.

Plans also include exploring the potential of installing an integrated photovoltaic system on the roof of the existing building. The solar energy generated is estimated to be sufficient to meet the electricity needs of the new hall throughout the year.

It is planned to use weathered, 100% recyclable blue-grey zinc for the construction of the outer shell of the concert hall.

A small pond will be created behind the building to improve the surrounding microclimate. Rainwater will be treated and sent to the pond while excess water from the pond will be stored in underground tanks.

Contractors involved

Steven Holl Architectsa US-based architecture and urban design firm, in partnership with Czech firm Architecture Acts, prepared the architectural design for the Ostrava Concert Hall project.

Japanese acoustic consultant Nagata Acoustics was selected to provide acoustic consultancy services for the new concert hall.

Silman Structural Engineers, a US-based company, provided structural engineering services while MFS, a multinational consulting services company, was awarded a contract to provide facade consulting services.

Theater Consultants Collaborative was engaged to provide services such as program verification, auditorium design, theater planning and seating systems, and theater equipment design and preview.

Transsolar Energietechnik, a German sustainability services consultant, has been appointed to provide consultancy services for the sustainability features of the Ostrava Concert Hall project.

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