- Vallimägi, Rakvere - Estonia

The solution was to be simple, yet effective, to provide access and set the mood for meeting the historical castle above the city. The form emphasizes its peculiar setting, reaching the castle through backyards and vice versa.

The beginning of the stairs is very narrow with steps fit for dwarfs (the height of the first step is 3mm). Every next step is a fraction higher, wider and deeper. Reaching up, the steps are huge with the last one being 0.8m high and 1.6m deep. Climbing the stairs is a powerful physical experience.

The step formula is based on a mathematical function the diagram of which is the same as the cross-section of the hill. A specially designed computer program defined the dimensions of the steps. The solution proves that alternative approaches may be used even in the most standard conditions.


Location Vallimägi, Rakvere

Client Rakvere Linnavalitsus

Design 2004

Built 2005

Architects Siiri Vallner, Heidi Urb

Step formula Taavi Vallner

Structural engineer Marika Stokkeby

Photos: Martin Siplane, Lembit-Kaur Stöör, Heidi Urb, Meelis Meilbaum

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