Planning and landscape firm SLA Architects and engineering office Ramboll have won an international competition to redesign Hans Tavsens Park and its surrounding area in the central Copenhagen borough of Nørrebro. The competition tasked architects with envisioning a park and streetscape that would benefit the hydrological, biological and social ecosystems of the neighborhood. The winning proposal, titled The Soul of Nørrebro, tackles the challenge by creating a system of drainage areas and an adaptable park designed to redirect runoff and contain and purify water during flood conditions.
Located on relatively flat land and along the water, Nørrebro is particularly susceptible to the effects of heavy rain. During particularly torrential rains, referred to as cloudbursts, flooding of major roads and basements is common. Excess water runs directly into Peblinge Lake, one of Copenhagen’s three distinct rectangular shaped lakes, pulling with it dirt or debris from the street.
To mitigate these issues, the 140 million DKK (20 million US Dollars) proposed design will use Hans Tavsens Park to act as a rainwater catchment basin capable to holding up to 18,000 cubic meters of water at a time. The rainwater will then be naturally filtered as it is slowly led into Peblinge Lake through planted drainage paths located along Korsgade, an existing street. The irrigation paths will provide a new identity and microclimate to the street, becoming a visible part of the cityscape.
The new park will feature courts and fields for a variety of sports that will serve as retention areas during flooding. Other amenities will include a pavilion designed in conjunction with Saunders Architecture, a fountain, playground and pathways to the adjacent cemetery. As it travels toward the lake, the drainage basin will also pass by Blågaards School, where it will provide irrigation for gardens and playspaces tended to by school classes. Along Korsgade, the drainage ways will serve as a barrier between the road and sidewalk, emptying into a final biotope along the lake edge.
“Our solution is based on creating a robust city nature that both solves the specific problem of handling torrential rain to avoid flooding, while at the same time creating a new and coherent series of urban spaces that offer stronger social community, greener and more natural experiences and new, creative opportunities for all Copenhageners,” says Stig L. Andersson, partner and design director of SLA.
Construction is set to begin in 2019, with an expected completion date in 2022.
LocationHans Tavsens Park, Hans Tavsens Gade, 2200 København N, Denmark
Project TeamRamboll, Arki_Lab, Gadeidræt, Aydin Soei, Social Action, Saunders Architecture
Correction Update: The article has been amended to specify the roles of Ramboll and Saunders Architecture in the project.