The Neighbourhood of Tomorrow

5 September 2017 Kingspan Group

How creative Copenhagen is showing the world a new kind of architectural vision.

The once industrial district of Nordhavn, Copenhagen is currently undergoing massive regeneration. Within a decade, the 2km² will be transformed into a residential and business district for the city alongside a still functioning harbour.
Copenhagen is one of the most innovative and influential cities in the world. Now, a new wave of creative construction methods is shaping the revitalised neighbourhood of Nordhavn.
Here are some of the fascinating new projects sure to shape the area.

Experimentarium – When old meets new

A former Tuborg beer bottling plant is now home to one of Copenhagen’s biggest family attractions. Experimentarium is the Danish science centre with a focus on generating interest in the science and engineering fields in young people. This mission has been reflected in the design of the building by CEBRA architecture.
A copper clad, helix shaped staircase welcomes visitors into the building. The shape not only reflects the scientific purpose of the Experimentarium but also provides a simple and coherent flow of visitors through the exhibits. On the exterior, the building consists of several large box shapes stacked off centre from one another to demonstrate the buildings multiple functions. The boxes are clad in a façade created from perforated aluminium panels which contrast against the old, pre-existing brick work at the base of the building.

The façade also shows air resistance encountered by the natural flow of air over the building. This acts as a physical and visual representation of science in action and helps the building itself serve as an educational tool.  Kingspan’s KS1150 TL coldstore wall panel and KS1150 FR wall panel were used in this project.

Copenhagen International School – Education made unique

One of the most potentially influential projects within Nordhavn’s rehabilitation is the Copenhagen International School. The 25,000 m² building is home to over 900 students and staff from across the world.
Every construction and architectural decision made was done with the school’s ethos of long lasting impact and community in mind.

The school was designed from its inception to simultaneously represent how the buildings of the future can be kinder to the planet while also demonstrating new ways of educating the generations to come.

12,000 solar panels envelope the building’s exterior. The panels are coloured to blend aesthetically in with the building and to prove that form need not be sacrificed over function. The panels will provide over half of the school’s annual electricity consumption.

The Silo – Against the grain

As a former major industrial zone, Nordhavn is strewn with the appropriate out-of-use buildings. One such example is a former grain silo reaching 17 stories in height. Designed by Danish architects COBE, the intention of this redevelopment was not just to find a new use for an old building, but to create a focal point for the new neighbourhood as well.
In turn, the silo has been radically transformed from a one trick industrial pony to a shining stallion of modern design ingenuity.

The concrete building was modified to include gaps for windows and balcony doors on its exterior. This was coupled with new insulation panels on the outside of the building covered by galvanised steel sheets to create a building straight from the pen of a sci-fi writer.

The result is a hyper modern residential and community use building with 38 uniquely sized and styled apartments, some with ceilings up to seven meters high. The large windows and doors allow natural light to flood the buildings while the insulated panels regulate temperature throughout the building.

STACK II – The recyclable office block

STACK II was designed by Danish firm, Arcgency. The aim for the project was to provide high-quality office space in a short time frame using modular construction techniques on a temporary site. The result was a stacked, chequered formation of shipping containers made from 90% recycled materials.
The exterior of the containers was covered in a matt grey façade. This not only serves to mask a past usage but also to provide much-needed insulation for the harsh Scandinavian winters and blistering summers. The insulation used consists of prefabricated modules shaped to fit the existing construct. Internally the large open spaces between container units allow for a bright collaborative workplace aimed at start-up and smaller scale companies. The architectural aesthetics focus on the raw look of the containers with any dents and original functions, such as the large doors and handles, still in place. The entire building is ultimately designed for ease of disassembly. This is to allow the same building and materials to be used on another temporary site elsewhere.
To find out more about Kingspan in Denmark, click here.

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