The tallest skyscraper in the Czech Republic is in the works but it won't be in Prague

The mixed-use building will be more than twice as tall as Brno’s AZ Tower

Raymond Johnston

Written by Raymond Johnston Published on 25.06.2020 11:51:11 (updated on 25.06.2020) Reading time: 4 minutes

The Ostrava Tower, planned for the northern Moravian city of the same name, will have 60 stories and a height of 238 meters, making it the tallest building in the Czech Republic.

It will be more than twice as tall as the current record holder, the 111-meter-tall AZ Tower in Brno, and taller then the proposed 135-meter-tall Top Tower for Prague’s Nové Butovice area. It would also be taller than the Žižkov Television Tower, which is 216 meters.

In terms of the world’s tallest buildings, it would not rank in the top 100. It would, however, be taller than London’s 180-meter Gherkin (30 St Mary Axe) but shorter than Paris’s 300-meter Eiffel Tower. Ostrava’s current tallest building is the New Town Hall, at 86 meters, built in 1930.

ostrava tower 02
Visualization of Ostrava Tower, with the New Town Hall on the left / via RT Torax, Chybik + Kristof Associated Architects

The proposed skyscraper in Ostrava will have two towers and stand near the Nová Karolina shopping center. A restaurant and observation deck will be on the 60th floor.

The commercial and administrative center will also have a hotel and apartments on it. The residential part will have 48 floors, including luxury and VIP apartments. The skyscraper should also have four underground parking floors for approximately 700 vehicles.

Office space will be created on the lower floors of the administrative tower, and a hotel with a lookout restaurant in the upper part. On the ground floor there are commercial premises and a conference center. The ground floor will connect the Forum Nová Karolina shopping center, 28. října street and Jantarová Street.

Ostrava City Hall on June 24 agreed to sell the 8,300 square meter lot of land on which the skyscraper should stand, an area called Slza (Teardrop) between the Nová Karolina shopping center and 28. října Street. The land in the center of Ostrava will be bought by the company RT Torax for 61.7 million CZK including VAT. The estimated investment costs are estimated at more than 2.5 billion CZK.

Visualization of Ostrava Tower / via RT Torax, Chybik + Kristof Associated Architects

In May 2019, Ostrava’s administration decided to sell the teardrop-shaped land, and interested parties could submit bids by September 2019. A minimum offer purchase price of 37 million CZK was set. The city required the building to have at least 12 floors and to comply with the zoning plan and other regulatory conditions of January 2019. Two bidders were interested, and RT Torax met the conditions and at the same time presented an attractive and unexpected proposal.

“Since the 1980s, there has been talk that a high-rise building should be built on the so-called Slza lot. The Ostrava Tower project fully fulfills this. In addition, the 60-story building with a height of 238 meters would become the tallest building in the Czech Republic,” Ostrava Mayor Tomáš Macura (ANO) said in a press release.

“The creation of this Ostrava landmark will also complement the gradual development of Nová Karolina into a modern district with quality housing and rich civic amenities. The gradual completion of the area, which until 1986 was a coal mine with a coke plant, will architecturally connect the historic core of the town on the one hand and the Dolní oblast Vítkovice area on the other,” he added. The annual Colours of Ostrava festival takes place in Dolní oblast Vítkovice, a large former industrial area.

ostrava tower
Visualization of Ostrava Tower / via RT Torax, Chybik + Kristof Associated Architects

Ostrava Deputy Mayor Zuzana Bajgarová said the development of the Karolina area is a very sensitive topic for many people, often perceived as being in conflict with the historic core of the city.

“I consider it more beneficial to perceive it as a contemporary district that will strengthen the city center in the long run. RT Torax presents a very ambitious project that fits into the concept of city development. Undoubtedly, a number of complications will appear over time, which are common even for many less demanding projects. The city is ready to cooperate with the investor and be helpful in solving it,” Bajgarová said.

The transfer of land is bound to the payment of the full purchase price and also to obtaining a valid building permit, which the company must apply for by December 2022. The building must be built by May 2026. The city has a pre-emptive right to the land until the new building is approved.

“We understand the approval of the sale of the Slza land by the statutory city of Ostrava as supporting the project that we would like to implement in this locality, for which we thank the city management very much,” RT Torax executive Tomáš Häring said.

“In the near future we will have a demanding geological survey of the land. A more precise form of the planned project will be derived from its results. Our intention is to build an interestingly designed, functional and innovative building of unusual appearance, and at the same time of high architectural quality. It will be a unique building not only for Ostrava itself, but also for the entire Czech Republic,” he added.

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