Bratislavia, Slovakia

Originally built in 1996 on an island in the Danube, the Cunovo Water Sports Centre in Bratislava, Slovakia hosted its first World Cup kayak event in 1997 and its most recent in 2013. It was recently selected to host the 2021 World Championships and made the decision to redesign and rebuild the historic channel for the event. The Slovakian Federation tapped S2O Design and Engineering to lead a major renovation of the iconic dual-channel venue. S2O Design created a new channel configuration and incorporation the RapidBlocs™ Obstacle system to give Cunovo a better racing experience for top-level boaters and recreation-level users alike.

S2O Design’s work on the iconic venue included reconfiguring the channel layout and updating the obstacle structures. The unique parallel courses, which allow paddlers to change from one course to the other midway, had become outdated, and unfavorable conditions on the left channel made it largely unusable for recreational paddlers and not conducive for competitions.

S2O Design redesigned the channel to integrate their patented RapidBlocs™ system, highly customizable three-dimensional obstacles that form the course’s waves, holes, drops, and eddies. The flexibility of the new system allows the operators to customize the configuration with the desired amount, type, and shape of features for any level paddler. The new competition channel configuration included repositioning the starting gate, adding a spectator-friendly features in front of the grandstand, and reconfiguring the bottom features on the racecourse.


Lyons, Colorado

The private residence is located along the North Saint Vrain Creek in Lyons, Colorado. The 2013 Colorado Flood devastated the property; damaging an existing bridge abutment, severing the residence’s waterline, eradicating 120 linear feet of multi-tier rock terracing, and washing away approximately 3,600 square feet of river front property.

Balancing site aesthetics with structural engineering presented a challenge; the bankside dropped approximately 16 feet over a 30 foot horizontal distance. The balanced design focused on re-stabilizing the bank and restoring the existing bank line by constructing a four tier rock terrace wall. The terraces, which were placed at varying elevations, created multiple outdoor living areas and provided the family with spaces they could enjoy at various water levels. The terraces were engineered to withstand large flood events and groundwater infiltration and designed to lighten the look and feel of the engineered wall. This was accomplished by reducing the rock size as the tiers elevated and by placing planting pockets, at varying elevations, to enclose spaces and contrast the rigid red sandstone.

The project was designed and engineered on a tight time line to ensure the project was completed prior to spring run-off to avoid additional damage.