Schmidt Hammer Lassen and BOGL to Transform a Former Prison Site in Denmark

Schmidt Hammer Lassen and BOGL to Transform a Former Prison Site in Denmark

Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects and BOGL were selected by the municipality of Albertslund and Freja Ejendomme to re-imagine Vridsløselille, a facility that housed once a state prison, and transform the site into an attractive, green district with a distinct identity derived from its unique heritage. The scheme was chosen alongside another project by COBE to create a combined vision for the future development of the area.

Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGLCourtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGLCourtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGLCourtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL+ 21

With a variety of ongoing masterplan projects in Denmark and abroad, Schmidt Hammer Lassen takes on another visionary venture, with the redevelopment of Vridsløselille. Located in Albertslund, 15 kilometers from central Copenhagen, the project aims to open up the closed off-site to the city, generating a natural urban extension. Encompassing a correctional facility and a stretch of other historical buildings, the 160,000 square-meter district will attract new residents and activity.

Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL
Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL

Our vision for Vridsløselille is to create a new neighborhood with a green heart for all citizens, an area that strengthens the social, climatic, and landscape cohesive force in Albertslund. We will preserve as much as possible of the existing prison building and integrate some of the complex's secondary buildings to enhance original qualities. Some old wings will be torn down but will be rebuilt with a deep respect for the original geometry, marking the existing star-shaped complex as the star of the show. In this way, we aim to encourage participation and sharing by converting some of the structures into common places for everyone to enjoy. -- Kristian Ahlmark, Partner and Design Director at Schmidt Hammer Lassen.


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Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL
Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL

Derived by its unique heritage, local identity, and existing connections, the first scheme proposed by Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects and BOGLwill draw city life to the area where green parks and residential complexes are intertwined creating a strong synergy while making way for a variety of building typologies, urban qualities, and common facilities”. In fact, the flexible intervention will put in place new connections and destinations focused on creating activated green spaces, urban farming as well as movement and sports facilities.

The current aspects will be maintained and enhanced, while the new master plan lays the foundation of a healthy and social lifestyle. The iconic star-shaped prison building, at the heart of the new district, will become an open space surrounded by trees. Inspired by the past, the proposal draws new connections through the “Loop”, a new main pathway surrounding the site and tying the different districts together with the existing prison structure. 

Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL
Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL
Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL
Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL

Vridsløselille is a unique place, forming its own 'universe' in a modernistic city. It has been incredibly exciting to transform the area by creating a characteristic identity that also reaches out to the rest of Albertslund. We have used the history, walls, and old gardens of the existing site to create a new meeting place for the whole city-- Jens Linnet, Design Lead Landscape and Creative Director at BOGL.

Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL
Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL
Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL
Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL

The project generates five different districts with their own identity and direct access to nature:

  • Skovbyen, the Northern district characterized by urban villas among two forest clusters
  • Bevægelsesbyen, the Western district with terraced, multi-story houses with semi-public squares and intimate urban spaces
  • Grobyen, the largest and most populated South-Western district containing residential units up to 7 floors where community and interaction play a central role
  • Portbyen, the Southern district along with the railway housing up to 10-story buildings
  • Havebyen, the Eastern district characterized by more intimate Renaissance gardens

Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL
Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL

It has been an exciting process to follow the five selected teams and their approach to the site. The diversity and depth of the initial project proposals are quite spectacular. The two projects, recommended by the jury, clearly shares a common vision for the site and at the same time holds individual strengths. The next step will be to merge those proposals and integrate their distinct qualities into a combined masterplan for the area. -- Morten Løgsted, Project Development Manager at A. Enggaard A/S.

Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL
Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL
Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL
Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL

  • Client: Freja Ejendomme/ The Municipality of Albertslund
  • Architect: Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects
  • Building Area: 160,000 m²
  • Competition: Parallel assignment, 2020
  • Landscape architect: BOGL
  • Engineer: Týrens
  • Sub-consultants: AKTII/ Via Trafik
  • Acoustics: Gade & Mortensen

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Cite: Christele Harrouk. "Schmidt Hammer Lassen and BOGL to Transform a Former Prison Site in Denmark" 04 Dec 2020. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/952523/schmidt-hammer-lassen-and-bogl-to-transform-a-former-prison-site-in-denmark> ISSN 0719-8884
Courtesy of Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects+BOGL

丹麦监狱遗址改造,SHL+BOGL保护原有几何形态

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