Fire at KTH Stockholm

Via The Local

We received this tragic news from reader, Johan Nordstedt, concerning Stockholm’s School of Architecture at the Royal Institute of Technology.    Early Wednesday morning, the roof of the lecture hall situated on Östermalmsgatan quickly filled with smoke.   From 7.10 in the morning until 7.30 in the evening, fire fighters worked to contain the flames and prevent the building from collapse.   More than 80 fire fighters were on call to put out the flames, yet due to the building’s old construction, the fire spread quickly.

The Architecture School, which measures approximately 600 students and 130 staff members, was evacuated from the affected buildings.  “I am very pleased that no students or staff were hurt in the fire. We will now do our utmost to minimise the effect on the school’s activity,” the principal Peter Gudmundson said in a statement on Thursday. Meetings have been held to discuss how to proceed if a student’s work was lost in the fire. “That we have to discuss, there are a few months remaining. But we follow all the examination work and the events of today have to be taken into account. Our goal is that students should not be affected,” explained Leif Brodersen.   Luckily, the university has reported that all servers are functional and all data has been backed up.

The fire damaged the lower part of the building and the upper stories have suffered damaged due to smoke and, to some extent, water.   has not yet been allowed access into the building, so there is no information regarding interior damage.  The building has been voted as one of ’s ugliest buildings, so it will be interesting to see how the public reacts if it must be torn down with a new building taking its place.  “If the building is heavily damaged the chances are it will be removed completely and the discussion is bound to crop up as it always makes the top of the list of ’s most hated buildings,” Martin Rörby of the Council for the Protection of ’s Beauty.

We are relieved no one was injured in the fire and wish the students luck with finishing their semesters.

Sources: The Local and KTH

Cite: Cilento, Karen. "Fire at KTH Stockholm" 05 May 2011. ArchDaily. Accessed 24 May 2015. <>
  • Fabio

    For sure one of the ugliest building within the city. The should use the opportunity and renew it.
    A good new this morning is that Library wasn’t affected by the fire.

  • Miso Vrsansky

    It is fantastic building, very well working, i realy enjoyed studying there

  • David P

    Wow … it is a shame. Another interesting enough building that is a pasture of the flames.

    Does something happen with the schools of architecture? A couple of years does the building of Bouwkunde’s faculty at TU Delft (Bakema – Van der Broek) also it disappeared because of a fire … someone seems to be burning the schools of architecture … will it be the sign of our time?

  • Andres Pavez

    I igree with Misa here. At first I did too think that this was Stockholms ugliest building but as soon as I spent a year of my studies there my perception changed. It was a great building!!

  • Katja Grillner

    An update on the current situation:
    Luckily the high part of the building containing Library, office and studio spaces still stands and will in all likelyhood be reocccupied during the coming week. The workshop, full scale construction lab, and large atelier and exhibition space in the low parts is however destroyed. This in itself is extremely sad, not the least (beyond the practical difficulties it causes for us) in terms of the architectural qualities. We are many that love our building and the memories we have from working here. Update in English on KTH website: