The new Slovenska street is a manifest of the future of the city of Ljubljana. It is a visual transformation of the central city of the capital; but more important than the visual aspect is the functional aspect, in which public transport, pedestrians and cyclists are given a key advantage in moving through the city.
Through narrowing of the roadway there is now more space for pedestrians, cyclists and restaurant and bar gardens. A new tree line of manna ash trees was planted on the eastern side of the street, which is lit by the afterernoon sun. The manna ash trees are resistant to the urban environment, and will adorn the space with white flowers in the spring and bright yellow foliage in the fall.
The urban furniture of the street encourages people to stop and rest in the space. Together with increased bar and restaurant areas on the pavement it has helped transform the former traffic lanes into a common, living space of the city. The cruicual element in the design of the avenue is the pavement. The combination of paving stones in two shapes and colors creates a geometric pattern, which functions as an ornamental carpet and increases the optical dimensions of the urban space.
By placing two pairs of large bus stations the street truly becomes a central transport hub for public transport. A car-oriented traffic road is thus transformed into a space which gives priority to public transport, pedestrians and cyclists. By designing a space which promotes sustainable mobility and public transport in the very centre, the city has made a key step in it's transport policy, and completed one of the key projects in the European Green Capital 2016 project.
During the last ten years Ljubljana, the capital city of Slovenia, has transformed itself from a sleepy post-socialist town into a contemporary european city, and a ever more popular tourist destination. With a systematic approach towards regenerating public space the city has received the European Prize for Public Space in 2012, and has earned the prestigious title “European Green Capital 2016”.
The main street of the city is the Slovenska street (the Slovenian road), which crosses the city in the north-south direction. The street was always a place of urban progress: here the first skyscraper was constructed, the first modernitic housing block... It is also the stage for many important events in the city, such as the marathon and the annual cycling race, various demonstrtions, and the record-breaking square dance of the city's high-school graduates.
The New Slovenska Street project is based on cukng-edge concepts in public space design. The former four-lane road was transformed into the central city avenue. Despite the large volume of pedestrian and bus traffic it is designed as a “shared space”, a space, where users participate equally, and height differences are reduced to a minimum.