competition 2010, Roudnice nad Labem

A mourning hall is not a church, a mosque, a synagogue. It serve no religion or sect. It comes out of place by its expression. It belongs in Roudnice, on the banks of the river Elbe, in the garden of Bohemia.

People do not want to say goodbye in a place without an identity. The hall, without pomp and in all moderation, greets the bereaved with a brick-earthed surface.

Natural materials, scale and simple readability of the construction operation induce feelings of peace and security. But through its elevated mourning hall, it still retains a dignity that should not be missed by a final farewell. The mourning guest is not distracted by the surroundings, yet enough daylight falls in through the upper windows.

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The alley-lined path that ends at the mourning hall as if to remind us of our life on earth. The mourning hall itself, however, does not end this journey, it stands just off to one side, behind a stand of trees, while the road extends into the wide fields of the "garden of Bohemia"

The mourning hall is surrounded and protected by a ring of adjoining rooms. The ceremony itself is thus undisturbed.

After the ceremony, there is the possibility of the coffin being carried reverently into the cemetery by mourning march, or the coffin being hidden from the eyes of the bereaved in a hearse. A vestibule is planted between the hall and the covered foreground. This solution thus allows for collision-free replacement of consecutive ceremonies if necessary, and in particular facilitates the operation of the wake. The arrival of hearses is completely hidden from the eyes of the bereaved and also the vehicles are covered from inclement weather during unloading and loading. The room for immediate survivors offers the utmost privacy. Survivors are also able to stay outside, on a covered patio, completely hidden from the gaze of unwelcome spectators. A direct link to the mourning hall is obvious.

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