Register: APR/18/2018, Submit: MAY/22/2018, Eligibility: Architects, enthusiasts, companies, students; individually, teams up to 4 members, Fee: Architects, enthusiasts, companies 90 USD, students 70 USD (OCT/19 – DEC/15/2017), architects, enthusiasts, companies 120 USD, students 100 USD (DEC/16/2017 – FEB/21/2018), architects, enthusiasts, companies 140 USD, students 120 USD (FEB/22/2018 – APR/18/2018); discount for 3+ registrations from one university/school, Awards: 1st Prize 3,000 USD, 2nd Prize 1,500 USD, 3rd Prize 500 USD, BB Student Award – 500 USD, BB Green Award – 500 USD, 6 Honorable Mentions
The Pape Nature Park in the south west region of Latvia is a birdwatching paradise, and home to some of the region’s most unique and majestic species found in the wild. In addition to being a home for some 50,000 migratory birds each year, the Pape Nature Park is now renowned for its reintroduction of several large herbivore species into the wild. Most notably was the reintroduction of wild horses, who had been driven from the area by human agriculture and settlements.
Spreading over some 51,000 hectares, the core of the park is the Papes Lake and the Nidas Marsh, along which there are several walking and hiking trails that allow park visitors to get up close and personal with the diverse nature found there.
PAPE NATURE PARK
The Pape Nature Park is a nature reserve in the south west region of Latvia, approximately 15km south of Liepaja. The entire park stretches over 51,000 hectares, and is made up of mainly bogs, carr forests, and dunes surrounding Lake Pape. The core of the park is the Papes Lake and the Nidas Marsh, and there are several hiking trails that allow visitors to experience the diverse nature found here.
The Natural Process Path is 9km long, and takes visitors through five ecosystems: the lake, the meadow, the marsh, the dunes and the forest. The Lake path is a challenging 32 km long route that circumnavigates the Papes Lake. Visitors can get up close and personal with nature, and learn more about the wide variety of species that call the park home.
Pape Nature Park is a birdwatching paradise, with approximately 50,000 migrating birds passing by during autumn and spring every year. A birdwatching station was established within the park back in 1966, recording and registering the habits of the migratory birds. Every year, thousands of birds and chiropterans use the strip of land between the Papes Lake and the sea as a part of their migration routes, with more than 200 species of birds migrating every autumn along the Pape shore.
One of Pape Nature Park’s most notable achievements was the reintroduction of several large herbivores that had previously been completely driven out of the area by human agriculture and settlements. The park has seen the return of wild horses, auroxen, and bison, who consume grass, bushes, cane, and tree bark, thus ensuring the biodiversity of the park and the survival of thousands of species of plants and animals.
THE COMPETITION: PAPE NATURE PARK GATEWAY
The Pape Nature Park Gateway competition is the second collaboration with Pasaules Dabas Fonds, the official WWF associate partner in Latvia. For this architecture competition, participants are asked to design an entrance point to the nature park; one that serves a practical function as well as enhancing the look and appeal of the nature park.
The main purpose of the structure would be to function as a visitor waiting area as well as a ticket booth/office. The ticket booth/office area should be able to accommodate 5 staff members at any one time, with one of them acting as a salesperson while the other four act as guides to visitors. Park visitors would need to be able to buy their tickets from the counter window without having to enter the building. The space will also need to include a small office area with a simple kitchen and small storage space to facilitate day-to-day functions.
An additional function for this space would be to provide overnight lodgings for up to four people where special guests such as researchers or birdwatchers can spend the night. The accommodation need only be very basic and shouldn’t be too large, but will need to provide facilities such as showers and toilets that could be shared by guests at the adjoining campsite.
To improve the camping experience, access to shower and toilet facilities is recommended, even if they are shared with those in the ticket booth. There will also need to be an outdoor surface that can be used as a kitchen counter during the summer, as well as a playground for children to use while visiting.
All structural elements must be made from durable materials, and should be able to be easily changed in case they are damaged. Vandalism has been known to occur in the area, therefore participants must think of an “indestructible” solution to this problem. The competition has no set budget, however the participants should try to fit their designs within the range of US $50K.
THE COMPETITION SITE
The competition site is located at the entrance point to the Pape Nature Park. The cite is currently used by those visiting the park as a picnic and camping spot. At present there are no pipelines to supply water to the site, and so projects will need to consider and implement strategies that allow for the collection of water.
Part of the registration fees will be donated to the Pape Nature Park to further development!