COPENHAGEN TRIP – Day 5

On Day 5 the group traveled by train from Copenhagen in Denmark to Malmo in Sweden, just over the new(ish) Oresund Bridge – now famous from the excellent TV show The Bridge (if you haven’t seen this then have a look). The main aim was to visit the Western Harbour development BO01, one of the leading examples of sustainable development in the world and held up as a key precedent for so many contemporary urban design projects in the UK. We also had time to look around the centre of Malmo before heading back to Copenhagen.

copenhagenstation Leaving from Copenhagen Central Station – what a lovely group – and…

malmostation   arriving at Malmo Central.

westernharbour1   We started in the Western Harbour development by the main square overlooking the sea. This is where some of the SuDS water comes out and flows into the sea, after going through the wetland treatment systems within the development.

westernharbour2   Another part of the SuDS system – expressed as a sculptural raised channel along the main thoroughfare.

westernharbour3   Within the development are a series of retention basins with associated wetland planting to treat the water as well as providing biodiversity and public space value.

westernharbour4   The SuDS channels also create wonderful thresholds into the buildings – a small bridge with associated bench helps define the entrance to a housing development.

westernharbour7   Much of the surface water flows into a central water body, some of which runs through a new park area and some between the back gardens of  the nearby houses, offering the opportunity to have a garden leading down to a living river.

westernharbour6   All the landscape detailing is interesting and intricate with decks overlooking open water adjacent to small bubbling pools that help oxygenate and clean the water, while creating wonderful sounds.

westernharbour10   The main park area by SLA Landscape Architects uses curvilinear edges and reedbeds to bring life to an open stretch of water.

westernharbour5  Hammocks provided for the students needing a mid afternoon nap.

westernharbour8   The ‘streets’ were primarily pedestrian with wetland planting/SuDS systems incorporated into public spaces throughout.

westernharbour9  Jetty / bridges / structures designed like scuttling insects seem to have infiltrated the park – some used for access into wet woodland, some as seating in the open areas, and some allowing people to walk out over the water.

turningtorso   The Turning Torso Tower by Santiago Calatrava – based on the vertebrae of the spine – is the only tall building in the area, acting as a landmark for the development as well as a site for the most spectacular views (if only we could have found a way to the top).

newparkpanorama  Crossing the road out of BO01 into the new surrounding developments – a large park has been created beside the local school providing sports/play facilities for the entire area. A really interesting design with a subtle use of levels, planting and raised decks to give a sense of interest in an otherwise flat landscape.

newparkropewalk   Ropebridge within the park extending between two of the earthforms.

westernharbour11   We discovered another small park by SLA nearby with organic paving forms, raised planters with their typical reduced plant mix giving a strong aesthetic quality, and a central grass area for play.

permeablepaving   Wandering around the surrounding development areas we discovered many interesting approaches to sustainability – the underground vacuum driven waste pipes, the extensive use of solar panels, wildflower meadows incorporated into the parks, SuDS expressed throughout, permeable paving everywhere, …

nestboxgreenwall   and multistorey parking buildings that have green walls (plants in planters incorporated into the building structure itself) with yellow nestboxes scattered all over the walls. Not only does it look interesting and covers up a potentially blank wall, but it is also fun, improves the microclimate, provides habitat, and makes a statement about the value of biodiversity in the urban environment.

malmocentre   In the centre of Malmo some of the students visitied the Design Centre in a small courtyard surrounded by timber framed medieval buildings  – great mix of old and new.

studentbar1  Back in Copenhagen we finished the day off with a trip to the Student Union bar to sample the local festivities…

endtheday   and the not so local brew.

About gloscape

Landscape Architecture @ University of Gloucestershire

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