Three colours – Red Black Green: Landscape Park in Copenhagen
Text: Peter Popp
Architects: Topotek 1 + BIG Architects + Superflex
Location: Nørrebro, Copenhagen
The red square serves as an extension and expansion of the sporting and cultural offerings of Nørrebrohall. A large central space and all sorts of gym equipment invite residents to meet for and through physical activity and games. The cheerful design of the square matches the new main entrance of Nørrebrohall, where the outside surface merges with the new foyer.
Urban living room: the black square
Mimers Plads is the heart of Superkilen. This is where the locals meet at the Moroccan fountain, on the Turkish bench or under the Japanese cherry trees. Permanently mounted tables, benches and barbecue facilities serve backgammon and chess players – an open-air living room in the middle of the city. Bicycle paths were moved to the east side of the square, while a hill in the north offers a view of the square and what's going on there towards the south.
Sport and play: the green park
The green park with its softly undulating hills and spaces is especially attractive to children, young people and families. This green landscape with playground is a place for families with children to meet, for picnics, sunbathing or relaxing on the green lawn, for hockey tournaments and badminton matches or other physical activities.
"The project ... is not only original but stunning to behold. It is noteworthy for its aesthetic approach, which is straightforwardly artificial rather than pretending to be natural. One of the project’s most exciting dimensions is its inclusion of the diverse community of users. Its bold use of colour and public art in spaces that promote social interaction and engagement all exude a high level of excitement and energy through what once looked like residual space. Superkilen shows what can be done with an open, inventive approach within severe cost limitations. It demonstrates the value of powerful visual and spatial moves while keeping connected to the realities of a contemporary multicultural context: the condition of many European cities," stated the jury responsible for allocation of the Institute Honor Award for Regional and Urban Design. The city park has also been proposed for the Designs of the Year 2013 award by the Design Museum in London. Superkilen and other nominated projects, including the Olympic Cauldron by Thomas Heatherwick and The Shard by Renzo Piano, will be presented in an exhibition at the museum from 20 March to 7 July 2013. The winners will be announced by the Design Museum in April.