Recently the plans for Copenhagen’s first climate adapted neighbourhood were presented to the public. The project’s visions to transform Saint Kjeld’s Quarter into Copenhagen’s greenest neighborhood are presented at a grand opening by Danish Environmental Minister, Ida Auken,
The climate is changing behavior. The Copenhageners can look forward to fewer but heavier rain showers, as the city has already been experiencing over the last two summers. In Saint Kjeld’s Neighborhood a comprehensive urban development project seeks to demonstrate how the city can be arranged so rainwater can be managed in the streets in a more natural and effective way. The project was designed by the newly established architectural firm TREDJE NATUR, and promotes new solutions for how we adapt to the climate changes and develop our cities.
Pragmatic and Innovative Urban Development
TREDJE NATUR’s project offers a wide range of pragmatic strategies to meet the many expectations in the area. As a key principle the architects reclaim 20% of the street area by optimizing the infrastructure and parking lots according to current standard. The obtained area counts potentially 50,000 square meters and is to be used for new urban space development. It is also an important
parameter not to compromise the city’s existing functions.
In the large urban spaces, such as Saint Kjeld’s Square and Tåsinge Square the office has put a great effort into creating new kinds of urban experiences founded in the city’s and nature’s changeability. A gigantic floating ring sprays a cooling rain mist out on the hot summer days, hundreds of plant species secures an attractive nature all year round and a hilly terrain invites you to play and stay.
“At Saint Kjeld’s Square and Tåsinge Square we optimize the terrain effectively doubling the urban space’s surface area. This provides new space for a comprehensive volume of natural value, a better micro-climate and hence more urban life and better rain water management. The large spaces will be both striking and natural hot spots in the district. It is also possible to integrate new cafes and playgrounds in the optimized terrain,” says Partner in TREDJE NATUR, Flemming Rafn Thomsen.
Naturally the water plays a particularly important role in the project. A key concept is the idea that the urban spaces are flooded when it rains and that the water remains in the urban spaces a little longer than usual. This relieves the sewer systems, and also helps to transform the experience and the use of the urban spaces.
Copenhagen’s Greenest Neighborhood
The project introduces bicycle paths that act as storm water channels, water towers, green roofs, urban gardens, green houses and canals that carry water out from the neighborhood to the harbor. And simultaneously give rise to greater biological diversity in the city. These are just some of the ideas for new ways to adapt to the climate change that will emerge over the coming years. The City of Copenhagen plans to transform the densely populated neighborhood into a showcase area for climate adaptation technology. It is hoped to become a place that exhibits how we at one hand ensure our cities to future climate challenges, and moreover upgrade our urban spaces and streets significantly.
“By far the greatest challenges our society face lies in the existing city. The goal is to upgrade the city to residents’ expectations as to how the city must perform in terms of sustainable, social and health related issues. Our key concepts are driven by the notion that a coherent and natural design creates the most powerful strategy and solution for the neighborhood as a whole, but also comprise a sensitivity to individual spaces, places and the people in the area,” says partner in TREDJE NATUR, Ole Schrøder.
Adaptation to the climate changes should not only deal with larger sewers or rising taxes. Therefore, the project will instead operate with the city’s visible surface and make the city greener, so that water is both delayed and the urban spaces are simultaneously transformed into wondrous places for the city’s residents to hang out or exercise.
IMAGES & TEXT: TREDJE NATUR