View Terrace and Pavilion are situated in “The Garden of Destiny,” a memorial park for all the souls that have been lost to Latvia in the last century. It will be completed as a gift to the country on its 100th birthday, in 2018. The View Terrace project started as just an architectural competition, but with the help of donations, it is now the first realized permanent building in the park. View Terrace received the Prize of the Year in Latvian Architecture Best Works Award in 2012.
View Terrace and Pavilion creates a harmonious environment that shifts the focus to the special character of the site—the spaciousness and the faraway horizon over river Daugava. As a reflection of the tight bond between Latvian people and nature, nature—a source of inner energy, strength, peace and inspiration—has been a priority in this project. The building has been designed to accommodate site particularities and promote a harmonious relationship in harmony with nature.
–The main patterns of the flow of people have been analyzed, and as a result, the building has been designed to avoid the panoramic river view from being obscured as a visitor approaches the site. –Stop points such as benches and covered spaces are situated in the places where the view is the most stunning and emotional. –The building has been shaped in a way that preserves the most valuable trees on the site. –This design makes use of terrain level differences. The pavilion is partly sunken into the ground so as not to obscure the view and to ensure comfortable access from the lowest level of terrace.
View Terrace and Pavilion includes varying levels of “openness,” providing the opportunity to use the building in all kind of weather conditions and allowing visitors to choose the level which suits them the best emotionally. In rain or strong wind, people can enjoy the view from the section of the pavilion that is covered with a roof and protected with thick glass. But if the weather is not an issue, then long exposed benches can be used. The building can be seen as a platform for harmonious interaction between people and nature.
The main architectonic idea of the project is building volume that following people movement from a pathway and seats gradually grows into a building in this way exploring building location on the very coast of the river. Roof inclinations create an exciting place to play and relax. The main challenge of the project was its highly public significance—it is built for everybody and, furthermore, by the donations of people.
The building is very compact, but its varied possibilities for use and configuration allow all parts of society to coexist. Just recently, couples in Latvia won the right to get married officially outside the church, and the View Terrace has unintentionally become a very popular place for wedding ceremonies. Pavilion and View Terrace are made in larch; the load-bearing structure is larch frames, and its finished with larch planks that are processed in a special technique to decrease slippery surfaces on pathways and the roof of the building.
Project by Didzis Jaunzems, Laura Laudere in collaboration with architecture office Jaunromans, and Abele.