Creating connections between Slagelse University Campus and the city

Slagelse, a city strategically located at the point between Copenhagen and rest of Denmark, continues to undergo major transformations; Initially residing with the typical medieval city’s urban and street structure, then evolving through increased industrialization supported by the railway development and further advancing with the establishment of shopping center in the 1970’s – each of these periods left a stamp in the city’s structure. The old town, train station and shopping mall are all located within a 1km radius and can be all interpreted as an anchor in the town, each acting as main focal points of the city. Unfortunately, the area in-between does not provide them with proper connections so they do not support each other and are forced to work as separate identities. Now, with a few simple actions, we are set to link 1000 years of urban development in order to create a beautiful and solid foundation for the city and integrate the proposed campus successfully in Slagelse!

The first step of our intervention endeavors to change the image of the streets linking each anchor. Roads, nowadays are dominated entirely by cars and are not providing pedestrians with ample reasons to use them for anything other than a fast connection. Changing the structure of these areas and turning them into more pedestrian friendly shared spaces would strengthen their role not only as links but also as stages for local resident interaction.

When those connections start to work, the next step focuses on redesigning the supporting or surrounding squares, especially those located in close proximity to the train station. With the future development of the Slagelse University Campus, the square will stand as an important pinnacle point in the city not only for visitors arriving by train, but more so for student life. To facilitate the exciting new cityscape, the whole structure of the square, that is currently an unsightly car park, must be changed. The square has the potential to become a relaxing heaven for leisure with places to study before classes, wait for the train or simply take solace and enjoy the weather with a cup of coffee.

 

The final and most important step is the creation of a new cultural square of the city. Centrally located in the middle between the city’s main anchors, this huge multipurpose area has infinite possibilities to become a lively zone for everyone. With support from local institutions such as a music concert hall, culture center and cinema, the newly designed square can provide both a place for cultural events gathering people and strengthening the local community, as well as maintaining its function for parking and becoming a viable part of the city’s water management system.

Location | Slagelse, Denmark
Client | Slagelse
Kommune 
Team| Urban Agency, Transform Architekts, Rambøll, NO, LivingCities, Ulrik Hindsberger
Type | Invited competition
Status | Settled