Breda Bizjak


In Favour of Public Space: European Prize for Urban Public Space 2012


The City Europe project, involving the Centre for Contemporary Culture from Barcelona, The Architectural Foundation from London, the Museum of Finnish Architecture from Helsinki and Museum of Architecture and Design (MAO), begins with the opening of the exhibition In Favour of Public Space at MAO. The project is a continuation of the efforts of European institutions which since 2000 in Barcelona award the European Prize for Urban Public Space which highlights the importance of public space in the democratic life of the cities. Award advocates and promotes the production of public and urban space that makes a common life in cities more pleasant. The exhibition in the park of the castle Fužine shows award-winning projects of renovation of public spaces from 2012, among which the Refurbishment of the Ljubljanica Riverside Zones awarded with the grand prize is particularly emphasized.

The exhibition In Favour of Public Space will be opened on Friday, 27 September at 19.00 by Judit Carrera, director of the European Prize for Urban Public Space (CCCB), and Janez Koželj, deputy mayor of the city of Ljubljana. At 19.30 the members of the International Jury will present in short lectures some award-winning projects. Dietmar Steiner (Director of the Architekturzentrum Wien) will talk about refurbishment of the Ljubljanica riverside Zones, Juulia Kauste (Director of the Museum of Finnish Architecture) will talk about the memorial to the abolition of slavery in Nantes in France, and David Bravo (CCCB) will talk about the renovation of the hilltop site of Turó de la Rovira in Barcelona and about the occupation of Puerta del Sol square in Madrid by the movement “Occupy”. On Saturday, 28 September at 11.00 in the park in front of the Museum of Architecture and Design, workshop for children will be held, and the coordinator of the award Masha Zrncic (CCCB) will guide the visitors through the exhibition.

Initiator of the establishment of the European Prize for Urban Public Space in 2000 was CCCB - Centre for Contemporary Culture from Barcelona. The aim of the prize is to continuously monitor changes and improvements, as well as problems related to public space in European cities. Award advocates the creation of public spaces that are both public (i.e. open and accessible to all) and urban. It highlights temporal, causal and other relationships relevant to the creation of public spaces and their urban character. Intentionally it tends to be different from initiatives that focus on the personality of the architect and his or her building, and from the awards for landscape architecture.

In the years since the establishment, several European institutions have joined the CCCB in the award procedures: The Architecture Foundation (London), ArchitekturZentrum Wien (Vienna), Cité de l'Architecture et du Patrimoine (Paris), Nederlands Architectuurinstituut (Rotterdam), Museum of Finnish Architecture (Helsinki) and Deutsches Architekturmuseum (Frankfurt). Twelve years of the history of awarding the prize presented about 1300 projects from more than 600 European cities. This year, MAO as a new partner joins those European institutions. That way the award is even more consolidated in the institutional sense and it also expands its geographic reach.

On the basis of insight into the transformation of public space in Europe and into the pressing problems of European cities, which is available because of the participation in the award procedures, the architectural institutions decided to combine knowledge and work together to face the new challenges of research, of sharing experiences and of providing a live debate on the challenges of public space in Europe, and developed City Europe project. The project will run for two years and will include a variety of activities that will take place between Ljubljana, London, Helsinki and Barcelona. Among them will be workshops for children and youth, exhibition and conferences and public debates which will open up questions of identity, ghettoization, crisis and quality of public space.

Friday, 27 September 2013
7:00 pm Opening of exhibition
Judit Carrera, Director of the European Prize for Urban Public Space, CCCB
Janez Koželj, Deputy Mayor of Ljubljana

7:30 pm Lectures
Dietmar Steiner
(Architekturzentrum Wien): Refurbishment of the Ljubljanica Riverside Zones, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Juulia Kauste (Museum of Finnish Architecture): Memorial to the Abolition of Slavery, Nantes, France
David Bravo
(CCCB): Restoration of the hilltop site of Turó de la Rovira, Barcelona, Spain; Occupation of the Puerta del Sol, Madrid, Spain

8:00 pm Discussion : Judit Carrera, Janez Koželj, Dietmar Steiner, Juulia Kauste, David Bravo, Matevž Čelik

Saturday, 28 September 2013
11:00 am Children’s workshop and guided tour of exhibition, Masha Zrncic (CCCB)

Closure of the exhibition
Sunday, 24 November 2013, 11:00am

Children's workshop and guided tour of exhibition, Rok Žnidaršič, architect


In the framework of "Europe City"

With the support of the Culture Programme of the European Union.

The event in Ljubljana is supported by the Embassy of Spain in Slovenia.


Opening, lectures and discussion: Friday, 27. 9., 7:00pm

Children Workshop and guided tour: Saturday, 28. 9., 11:00am

Children Workshop and guided tour: Sunday, 24. 11. 11:00am

Entry fee



T: 00386 (0)1 5484 274/270
E: infobio(at)


Public Space