Jelenia Góra – a city in Lower Silesia, south-western Poland in Jelenia Góra valley, on the Bóbr river. So much says Wikipedia. But is it really situated by the river? Residents barely recognize it. Newcomers even less. For years the city has turned its back on the river and so the river looks completely different within the city’ borders than outside.

Yet, the need to restore the river and give it back to the city has been stressed on many fora, in numerous documents. A recent, most supported initiative of social workers associated as Bóbr promenade of Jelenia Góra (SJPB) which has been financed from the local budget, seems to have given a right impulse that will finally convince local authorities to address this issue. So far, within the context of social movement, there has been a very general idea to create a route for cyclists and pedestrians which would lead from Wiejska St. up to the "Pearl of the West" shelter ( “Perła Zachodu”) along with recreational areas.

In Poland there are many examples proving that advantages of rivers flowing through cities should be exploited and that it is actually possible. More and more municipalities decide to use their recreational potential by creating boulevards, bike paths, beaches, playgrounds, entertainment facilities as well as by developing green zones and pulling these areas into the public space. Paths and routes created in this ways are frequented by locals and tourists. Moreover, when skillfully developed they emphasize the beauty of both the rivers and the towns. Jeleniogórska Valley has a potential to host water recreation. The rivers: Bóbr and Kamienna should be a natural choice for this kind of spatial development. Whether and to what extent their water can be used for bathing, should be answered by specialists’ research and analysis. Undoubtedly, there’s a huge water potential in the area of Cieplicka St. and Polna St. – the reservoir on the back of the former Customs Office, or in the area of Pakoszów – fish ponds. Both places have their advantages, but it seems that the first location has more potential due to its good access, proximity to infrastructure as well as its location within the administrative borders of Jelenia Góra, surroundings enabling for development and a wonderful view of the Karkonosze Mountains. It is therefore necessary to consider creating there a bathing reservoir which would be based on natural methods of water purification. Such basins are produced on a massive scale in Western Europe, and has even entered Poland - in Złoty Stok  (,pierwszy-w-polsce-staw-kapielowy-bez-chloru), Bolesławiec (,72040.html) or in Stary Sącz (

Within the framework of the initiative Bóbr promenade there will be workshops organized in October for children and adult residents of Jelenia Góra. It will be located on one of the banks of the Bóbr River in the city center.

The aim of the workshop is to develop imagination and manual building skills of children. Having fun  while creating mock-ups should teach them cooperation, coping with problem and solving them, as well as increase their confidence. We do not want to impose any conditions or rules of creating their own mock-ups or models. We want children to have an opportunity to decide for themselves how they want to construct them  ̵  we will only assist.

Text: arch. Wojciech Drajewicz, SARP O / Jelenia Góra; Arch. Szkapiak Karolina, SARP O / Jelenia Góra

The project was selected for implementation during the "Open Call DoFA'15" competition for festival related activities.