Vilkaviškis bus station
The bus station built in Vilkaviškis – a small town in the Lithuanian province with a population of around 11.000 inhabitants – not only performs the function of the transport infrastructure, but also solves an explicit social mission.
Due to insufficient supply of social welfare and diversity of services in small towns in Lithuania, more and more people are moving from small towns to live in bigger cities or abroad. The exceptional architectural solution of the building, which functionally aims to concentrate services, small business and trade activities, helped the municipality to concentrate business and create new jobs in the region. Surrounded by greenery and signifying environmental friendliness, with its design philosophy resembling recreational buildings, the project of the bus station sets a completely new direction for the design of buildings for transport infrastructure.
The complex urban setting and the trees growing on the plot led to the creation of a functional scenario for the building and the environment, in which the trees would become an integral part of the building space.
The building has a building area of almost 4.000 m2 and the relationship with the environment is very close, even intimate, and the relationship with nature is exceptional. The conceived and implemented functional idea of the passable building turned the shortcomings of the situation into uniqueness of the project: the area of the triangular plot ‘absorbed’ the building intuitively merging with the surrounding nature thus creating a park and public space inside the building.
The one-story building of exceptional architecture, in which, according to the architect, the old trees growing on the plot are integrated into the structure of the building, created for the town an exclusive public space under the roof. Such design not only removes the boundary between the interior of the building and its exterior, but also makes this place functionally accessible and open – the building space is open for concerts and performances, tastings of products produced by local farmers, outdoor cafes and other public activities.
The white color gives the building a feeling of lightness; the subtle play of light and shadow plays a special role in the architecture of the building and create the image of a building typical of parks. Even when staying inside the building, one can feel a very close connection with nature – large-volume windows dissolve the actual separation of the interior and exterior. Thanks to these architectural decisions, a considerably large building flawlessly fits into a rather restricted plot, ensuring a new urban and architectural quality of the place. The functional idea and architectural solution of the building are accentuated by the selected simple but long-lasting and natural building and finishing materials, such as concrete, glass, painted aluminum.
Building design is very sustainable, nature and environment friendly, meets the energy performance requirements for Class A+ buildings. For climates with moderate heating and cooling needs energy-efficient geothermal heat pump technology is used , flat solar panels will be installed on the roof in 2021and the building will be fully self-sufficient in electricity from renewable sources.