December 19 2012

Sluseholmen, Denmark: Socially-Sustainable Architectural Developments

Sluseholmen, Denmark

The canal bus in the Danish capital allows visitors to embark on waterfront architectural variations. Imposing cultural temples, such as The Opera and Royal Theater, next to renovated industrial parks, canal baths and newly-built residences, start from Islands Bruge towards Slusehomen. The urban expansion is pushed over idle industrial quarters. Sluseholmen’s was set on similar premises, encouraged by high rates of housing demands.

Artificial islands and dug-out canals reshaped and conditioned the land use. Architecture and urban planning experts from Arkitema and the Dutch office Sjoerd Soeters have cosigned the newly laid plans. The international collaboration was initiated because Java Island and its’ residential settlements, in Amsterdam, have been greatly inspired by the Danish party. Sharing functional concepts directly supports innovation.

In essence, the project aims to achieve affordable housing, while maintaining high quality standards. The sensitive equilibrium between aesthetics and sustainability counterbalance with economic factors or respecting local realities. The solution did not compromise any of these conditions. Low-rise buildings were built, reaching up to six-floors, standing on eight artificial islands. The core structure had a unique module which could be multiplied under various façade shapes. The buildings are aligned side-by-side exposing unique external features that cover the same core.

The strategy involved major players and, in addition, several contributions from local architectural practices. It is the result of a large teamwork. Every proposal followed given matrices that constrained sizes and material choices. In 2006, inhabitants entered their new homes, proud to have made choices which they could identify themselves with. The windows face flowing waters and the interior gardens have underground garage facilities with public green layers above. Each canal line is curved, encouraging people to walk more – for deeper views. Local transport is still improving by adding bridges and bus connections.

The space was activated and the architectural experience extended beyond the visual and the temporal. Durability and functionality might be the best sustainable options. The colorful order, wildlife, and peaceful waterfronts attract curious visitors. The authorities support increasing water sport activities. The old fishing club has not been cast aside by the new settlements. It is part of the new neighborhood’s identity.

Sluseholmen, Denmark

Could you see better solutions to make the synergy between old and new ?

Credits: Images and data linked to sources.

Denisa Petrus

Denisa Petrus, following a Constructing Architect Bachelors Degree at VIA University, in Denmark, recently graduated after completing her final project at the Polytechnic University of Valencia, Spain. Her international educational background and practice as project architect in Dublin helped her gain a expanded perspective over the streamlining process from design to construction. She aims to further develop her commitment to the sustainability paradigm by starting a Master in Sustainable Architecture degree in the near future. Currently settled in Copenhagen, Denmark, a genuinely environmentally-conscious city, Denisa is constantly inspired by its` vitality and pragmatic approach. Her blogs sketch and summarize the Scandinavian urban experience, a symbiosis between contexts and behavior, esthetics and technology.

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, December 19th, 2012 at 5:15 pm and is filed under Architecture, Engineering, Environment, Environmental Design, Housing, Infrastructure, Land Use, Landscape Architecture, Urban Development/Real Estate, Urban Planning and Design. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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