Prague expands public chair project

There will be more places for ‘quality sitting’ in Prague this year

After walking around Prague for a while, it is nice to sit down. But in many areas, the only seats belong to restaurants or cafes, or there are no seats at all.

Prague will be fixing that problem by again placing tables and chairs for the public to use for free starting in April. The Prague Chair and Tables project will take place this year for the third time. The number of places is expanding compared to last year due to increasing interest and now numbers 60 spots.

“The season last year also brought some developments. In selected places, for example, chairs and tables were placed loosely without chains such as in Emauzy, the Botanical Garden, or Veletržní palác, this process has proven to be a good thing, and that's why these places will grow,” Prague Mayor Adriana Krnáčová (ANO) said in a press release.

If the tables and chairs do not have chains, people can move them into the shade or make a large circle so a group can talk.

Another innovation last year was that in the winter season in some places, the chairs have stayed so people could use them off-season.

Civic associations, private bodies, and cultural institutions can join the open call for chair and table operators. In the pilot season in 2016, the chairs were in only eight places, and this has been expanding ever since. New locations include the Albertov campus, Kasárna Karlín, Park Jezerka, Klamovka, Park Sacre Coeur, Corsa Karlín's inner courtyard, the Ďáblice housing project, Štvanice island and Strossmayerovo náměstí.

“The interest from managers and users shows that Prague residents like to participate in the cultivation of public spaces, but also that the possibility of ‘quality sitting’ in the town is still missing," Deputy Mayor Petra Kolínská (Greens) said.

Architects from the Prague Institute of Planning and Development (IPR) were inspired by similar projects in New York, Copenhagen, Zurich and Stockholm. “We decided we would not lock the chairs and tables this year, just like in Copenhagen or New York. We believe Prague will appreciate the trust of the city,” IPR director Ondřej Boháč said.

Locations previously used in 2017:

Parčík v Kolodějích, Klánovice – park H. Vilgusové, Komunitní prostor Buďánka, Malostranské náměstí, Žižkov – in front of Atria, Senovážné náměstí, Wneceslas Square, Zbraslav – in front of the municipal building, Karlín – Thámova, at metro Křižíkova, Náměstí Václava Havla, Centrální park Na Pankráci, Veletržní palác, Pražská tržnice – Jatka 78, VŠ kampus Dejvice, Containall – Stalin, Plácek Libušina under Vyšehrad, Kino Pilotů, Rudolfinum, Botanická zahrada na Albertově, Pražské kreativní centrum – interior courtyard, Gamekeepers house at Cibulka, Palác Archa - Na Poříčí, CAMP – Centrum architektury a městského plánování, Smíchovská náplavka, Janáčkovo nábřeží, Rašínovo nábřeží, Terasa Emauzy, Klementinum, Puškinovo náměstí, Kongresové centrum, Prosek , Čakovice

Preliminary list of some new places for the 2018 season:

Palackého náměstí, Klánovice – garden at KC Nová Beseda, Řepy housing project– KC Průhon, Kampus ČZU - Suchdol, Park Jezerka, Kasárna Karlín, Horní Počernice – park U Divadla, Corso Karlín – interior courtyard, Bělohorská – park at klub Kaštan, Containall Stromovka, Veronské náměstí, VŠ kampus Albertov, Park Sacre Coeur, Park Klamovka, Butovice – park Suchý Vršek, Courtyard at Ďáblice housing project, Štvanice, Areál Výstaviště, Strossmayerovo náměstí, Jungmannovo náměstí, Park Na Karlově, Metro Lužiny

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