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  3. Friis & Moltke Designs Housing Complex as Conceptual Scandinavian Forest

Friis & Moltke Designs Housing Complex as Conceptual Scandinavian Forest

Friis & Moltke Designs Housing Complex as Conceptual Scandinavian Forest
Friis & Moltke Designs Housing Complex as Conceptual Scandinavian Forest , © Friis & Moltke
© Friis & Moltke

Friis & Moltke has designed a new housing project in Aarhus inspired by a Scandinavian forest. Just as “moss-covered hillocks and majestic towering trunks with crowns filter light and create shimmering patterns on the forest floor,” says the architect, the Løvhusene housing complex adapts to its natural surroundings as circulatory “boardwalks” weave between a “forest” of clustered wooden residences, all centered around a shared community “clearing.”

© Friis & Moltke
© Friis & Moltke

From the architects: The basic architectural concept of the project comes from the Scandinavian forest; moss-covered hillocks and majestic towering trunks with crowns filter the light and create shimmering patterns on the forest floor. Sharp rocky surfaces intersect the soft hillocks and leaves, while floating boardwalks weave between the tree trunks. 

© Friis & Moltke
© Friis & Moltke

The houses are arranged like a little village in small clusters around a central space - a community. In between, the buildings allow the landscape and paths to seep through the common area, which takes on the character of a clearing in the forest. In order to guarantee views and daylight in the clearing, the lowest-lying houses have been kept at one-story, while the houses highest up on the slope rise to three stories. Together they create shifting building heights and the sloping terrain generates a varied settlement, which breaks down the scale and adapts to nature. 

© Friis & Moltke
© Friis & Moltke

In contrast to the soft shapes of the countryside and the forest, the mossy forest floor is taken over by distinctive concrete plateaus on various levels. In some places the hard surfaces act as terraces, in other places as floors for houses, over which sculptural, floating wooden boxes form the ceilings. Wide windows allow the forest floor tree trunks to come right up to the façade, creating an intense feeling of proximity and atmosphere. 

© Friis & Moltke
© Friis & Moltke

The sharp geometric shape of the floating boxes with vertical wooden cladding and compositionally placed window openings create a dialogue with the vertical tree trunks, the tree crowns and the flickering light. The houses in these boxes have a quasi-pictorial, framed view of the forest’s treetops and the sky.

  • Competition

    Løvhusene
  • Award

    Winning Entry
  • Architects

  • Location

    Aarhus, Denmark
  • Engineer

    Tækker
  • Landscape Architect

    Tredie Natur
  • Client

    Tækker, Lasse Lillevang
  • Area

    7300.0 sqm
  • Photographs

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About this author
Cite: Karissa Rosenfield. "Friis & Moltke Designs Housing Complex as Conceptual Scandinavian Forest " 26 Dec 2014. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/582151/friis-and-moltke-designs-housing-complex-as-conceptual-scandinavian-forest/> ISSN 0719-8884

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