Copenhagen: Krøyers Plads Rejuvinated

cph_kp_01For more than a decade, plans for developing one of Copenhagen’s most prestigious and historical waterfront locations, Krøyers Plads, were continually rejected by local community organizations and politicians, vigorously believing that the designs were failing to respect the identity of Christianshavn’s waterfront. The bruised egos of an international and domestic architectural community had to take stock and to look at Krøyers Plads with a new approach. Finally in 2011, a proposal by Vilhelm Lauritzen Architects and COBE was commissioned drawing its inspiration from the square’s historical warehouses, including the one housing the Michelin restaurant, Noma. Krøyers Plads is now home to a 20.000m² residential property, housing 105 apartments, office and retail space. Three new, five-storey buildings, respecting the heights of the surrounding warehouses, are clad in robust red and yellow brick that interact perfectly with its 300 year old neighbors. The features that strike the first-time visitor are undoubtedly the folding roofs, the harbor facing cables and the public functions at street level, such a popular theme on Copenhagen’s waterfront.

Krøyers Plads is also drawing international attention, reaping awards for its sustainable approach, being labelled as Denmark’s first eco-labelled residential building. This sympathetic architectural and urban solution by Vilhelm Laurizten Architects and COBE, has shown that respecting the site’s context and identity doesn’t necessarily compromise the design solution.

Photo credits: Phillip Mills

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