Long-neglected Kamenné Square in Bratislava downtown is a getting facelift

Next year asphalt will be replaced by stone and remaining billboards will be removed.

Kamenné Square before revitalisation.Kamenné Square before revitalisation. (Source: Sme)

The revitalisation of the long-neglected Kamenné Square in Bratislava’s downtown, home to the iconic Kyjev Hotel and Tesco department store, is going according to plan. In August Bratislava city council removed illegal street food stands, trimmed overgrown greenery, replaced old cement pots with new ones and extended lawns.

“The revitalisation stems from the Live Square project, which was a result of a participative process of Bratislavans, civic associations and shops and other businesses operating around the square,” said Bratislava Mayor Ivo Nesrovnal, adding that the solitary, leaning, Paulownia tree, which is a symbol of the square, got treatment too.

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The city has invested €150,000 in the square so far. In cooperation with Aliancia Stará Tržnica, a non-governmental organisation running the nearby old market hall on SNP Square, it will install new benches and lighting. During the next phase in 2019, the city will replace the asphalt on the square with stone paving and remove the remaining billboards.

The revitalisation was preceded by a long discussion between the city council and partners sitting directly on the square and close to it. The city, in cooperation with Aliancia Stará Tržnica and the Slovak Governance Institute (GSI), launched a participative process. During this, they asked people how the square should change. The result was the joint Živé Námestie (Live Square) project, on which the city based the revitalisation.

“For now, we are satisfied with the course of works,” said Gábor Bindics from Aliancia Stará Tržnica, as cited by the TASR newswire, adding that the first step was to clean this public space and now the work is continuing under the umbrella of the Live Square project. “We want to participate with the city in using money allocated from the city budget next year on the priorities of the project that will interconnect Kamenné Square with SNP Square and other surroundings.”

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