Cesis is a town in Latvia located in the northern part of the Central Vidzeme Upland. The population of the town is 18 thousand people. Tourism is one of the priority directions of the city development. Medieval churches and castles are the main city sights, but, despite their high historical value, these objects, unfortunately, are not able to attract large flows of tourists from other cities. Cēsis needs a new bright object, which will become the epicenter of cultural life, will strengthen the city’s economy and form an attractive urban image.
THE BILBAO EFFECT
In 1991, when Frank Gehry decided to take part in an international competition for the concept of the Guggenheim Museum building in the Spanish city of Bilbao, the customers gave him Sydney opera as an example. The customers needed a building that could do the same for Bilbao as the Sydney opera did for Australia. Gehry provided the desired result. Since the opening day, the museum has attracted more than 4 million visitors to the city and brought Bilbao millions of dollars as a result of increased economic activity and tax revenues. He turned Bilbao from the decrepit industrial port city into one of the most popular tourist centers. Of course, other construction projects have played a role here – improving the metro system, a new airport, a shopping complex, but the main merit belongs, of course, to the Guggenheim Museum.
The competition site is in close proximity to major tourist attractions and the railway station, which provides excellent accessibility. Based on the task (achieving the “Wow” Effect), it was decided to demolish all buildings, except for the projected one. What unites people? Music. The concept offers a redevelopment model of the former factory in the music center. Currently there is an active development of the festival culture, so that such a center in Cēsis could attract tourists from all over the world. Various musical platforms and one multifunctional concert hall are united under one roof. All music genres: from classics to hip-hop in one place. In addition to conducting music festivals, the site can perform for the city the function of a cultural and educational center.