Plovdiv Central Square


And the winner is...

On September 11, 2014, Plovdiv Municipality Council gathered and decided that as winner of Plovdiv Central Square Competition will be selected the project of...


See the project

Public Voting

A public voting to suggest a winner among the 3 finalists in the competition took place between July 14 and September 1.
We want to thank all 1662 voters.
On September 12, after an Expert Committee meeting, the Municipality of Pliovdiv will announce their final decision

FORA, Portugal
SMARCK Studio, Italy
Veit Eckelt, Sigmund Eckelt, Philipp Mecke, Ana Fillipovic, Germany
Total: 1662

Full voting report


The jury have selected 3 finalists and recommended to be ranked as follow:
First place: Entry #84; second place: Entry #28; third place: Entry #96.
The winner will be selected by Plovdiv Municipality.

See all 125 entries


The Competition

The Municipality of Plovdiv (Bulgaria) and One Architecture Week invite worldwide architects to participate in an open international competition for concept design. The competition is to outline the future of the Central Square in Plovdiv—an emblematic location where most of the significant historical periods of the city overlap. A solution for their untroubled co-existence is yet to be found.

Who can participate?

The competition is international and anonymous. Eligible for participation are Bulgarian and foreign architects or teams with at least one member who is an architect and in legal capacity to practice architectural design.

How will winners be selected?

The winners will be selected in two stages of evaluation.
Stage 1: The international jury distinguishes 3 finalists
Stage 2: Following a public discussion, the Municipality of Plovdiv selects the final winner among the 3 finalists.

How to participate?

Participation in the competition is free. No preliminary registration is required. Projects should be submitted online via special form on this website which will be accessible between 14 June and 20 June 2014.


The three finalists will receive financial rewards as follows:
First prize: 20 000 BGN (~10 000 EUR)
Second and third prizes: 10 000 BGN (~5 000 EUR)


11 April 2014 Competition announced
11 April–20 June 2014 Projects development. Questions and answers. The answers to the frequently asked questions will be published here.
14–20 June 2014 Project submission
21–23 June 2014 Technical committee
24–27 June 2014 Expert committee
28–29 June 2014 International jury meeting. Announcement of the 3 finalists.
30 June–12 September 2014 Public discussion of the finalists. Final winner selection.
12 September 2014 Final winner announced.


Expert committee

During the evaluation process the international jury will be joined by an expert committee comprising:

  • a representative of the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Bulgaria
  • a representative of the Union of Architects in Bulgaria
  • a representative of the Chamber of Architects in Bulgaria
  • a representative of the National Institute of Immovable Cultural Heritage

The Aim

Central Square is a difficult place ridden with problems. Most of the historical and architectural layers of the city intersect right here – archaeological excavations, a socialist Party House, a Modernist and later renovated post office, а park from the late 19th century and a number of transport conflicts.

The aim of the competition goes beyond renovation of the square and its adjacent areas. The challenge is to provide a strategy for harmonizing all these layers into an actively functioning, attractive and distinctly contemporary space.

Competition projects should propose:

  • Ideas for the preservation, exposure and socialization of the archaeological cultural heritage
  • Reorganization of the public space
  • Development of urban design elements, green areas and paving

Explore the competition area in Google Maps

How big is the square?


All photos

Competition Assignment

The package contains all materials necessary to start project development: site plan (DWG file) and competition assignment (PDF file), including the competition program, requirements, drawings, historical overview.

Download competition assignment ZIP, 29 MB

Additional Materials


Do I need preliminary registration to enter the competition?
No. No preliminary registration is required. All projects submitted between 14 June and 20 June 2014 which comply with the competition requirements will be admitted.
Should my name be on the presentation panels or is the competition anonymous?
No personal or business details should be evident on the panels. Personal details will be entered in the project submission form.
I'm a student in Architecture. Can I participate in the competition?
Yes, but only as a member of team where there is at least one registered architect who is in legal capacity to practice architectural design in their country.
I'm a Landscape Architect. Can I participate in the competition?
Yes, but only as a member of team where there is at least one architect. The architect must be in legal capacity to practice architectural design in their country (registered architect).
I'm eligible architect in other country, not in Bulgaria. Do I need a Bulgarian partner in order to participate?
No, Bulgarian partners are not needed at this stage of the competition. If at least one member of your team is licensed to practice architectural design in your own country, you can participate.
What should our project propose for the archaeological site of the Great Basilica?
The Great Basilica is not fully archaeologically researched. It is simply preserved shortly after its excavation. Further archaeological research is expected to take place in the area after this competition. The participants are expected to design the access to the site and how it will be conceptually connected with the other archaeological sites within the competition area.
To what extend are we free to use the Plovdiv Square underground levels in our competition proposal?
The underground levels of the square have never been researched. We can only guess what lies beneаth the surface. You can propose underground interventions, but you should have in mind that in case of implementation of the project, if a valuable archaeological site is discovered, the project may have to be changed. Also, have in mind there is high underground water in the area. The sub terrain objects should not be below 157.00 mark.
Do we work only with the roman remains that are already discovered, or we can excavate more?
Yes, you can propose more excavations.
Could it be possible to enlarge the size of the access of the 3 underpasses located on the eastside of the Tsar Boris III Obedinitel Boulevard—and therefore to enlarge the size of the competition area?
Yes, it is possible.
What kind of intervention can be done with the underground passages since we can’t eliminate some of the stairs?
What you cannot change are only the height and width of the tunnels. The stairs and ramps can be changed. (There was a mistake in the English version of the Competition Assignment on this topic, but it is already fixed. See the correction below)
Is it possible to discontinue Central post access from Gladstone street?
At the moment that’s the only way for the building to be accessed by car (mainly for supplies). So if this access is discontinued, another service entrance should be proposed.
Can I have the plans of the Post Office building?
Unfortunately the plan of the Post Office building have been lost and are not available in the archive of Municipality of Plovdiv. You can take a look at some interior photos and the evacuation plan
Аt the Main street and North of the Post Office Building, there is one building in the plan, but in the pictures it seems to be temporary or half destroyed. Can this building be demolished?
Yes, this building can be demolished.
Is it possible to build new buildings in the area under restrictive regime “Regime B”?
The zone marked as Regime B is out of the competition area. New constructions are allowed after detailed urban planning project development, which are not a subject of this competition.
Is it possible to change any of following: panel orientation, content distribution, scale of drawing (masterplan/sections)?
The number of the panels (5 panels A0), their orientation, content and scale are mandatory, for reasons of preserving the anonymity.
Is it possible to add other materials to the panels (not only the required ones), and what should their scale be?
It is possible to add other drawings, images, schemes or text to the panels, but you still have to have all 5 panels. For example you cannot combine 2 panels into 1 or submit 6 panels. The specified scales are mandatory only for the information required in the Competition Assignment. If you add other drawings, you are free to choose their scale.

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To all participants who have downloaded the English version of the Competition Assignment prior 30 April. There is a mistake on page 12, Objectives for Zone C. The wrong version: "... while retaining the parameters of the existing facilities (stairs, ramps, height and width of the tunnels)." The right version: "... while retaining the parameters of the existing facilities (height and width of the tunnels)." The mistake is already fixed. The conclusion: Stairs and ramps of all underpasses can be changed.

Additional Materials

The following materials have been requested by participants in Q&A or added by the Municipality of Plovdiv. They give further information about objects and sites within or in close vicinity to the competition area and will be updated regularly.

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© 2014
The competition assignment and this website have been produced by WhAT Association
upon invitation by the Municipality of Plovdiv and One Architecture Week and are legal property of the Municipality of Plovdiv.