Location: Oslo, Norway
Stage: Competition Submission
The studio was invited by SeeSpace to take part in an international competition based in Oslo to design a fire station that would be situated within the developing district in Bjørvika; formerly an industrial area located between a railway line and a busy motorway.
The area is now known for being home to the Norwegian Opera House and other innovative “green” buildings such as the Barcode which provides offices, apartments and a new financial district that is now considered “Central Oslo”. The site sits in the corner of Aker Brygge which was previously an old, run-down dockyard situated slightly off the city centre.
Over the past two decades, this area has been transformed into one of the most attractive (and most expensive) residential areas within Oslo. The architecture has retained the canals and stark features from its dockyard’s past and combined them with modern glass, lights and indoor passageways to create an immensely attractive mix of flats, lively restaurants, shops and art galleries which beam with life at any time of the day.
The site has been called into action as the central fire station (Hovedbrannstasjonen) is being decommissioned. It has now been announced that there will be a new fire station introduced that services the growing metropolitan city of Oslo. Located on the harbour, the site has vantages to new and historic parts of the city and with the growing popularity of the surrounding area, the fire station will be designed with the duality of the public and private program at the forefront of the project.
This cultural precinct titled ‘Meet Me at the Fire Station’ uses bending and curving motions that facilitate movement between the fire station and public amenity. The creation of a figure 8 movement enables a clear view of the waterfront and its opposing side whilst not impacting the neighbours’ views of the water. The movement of the form facilitates a public outdoor recreational area, gardens, a café, a public walkway, a cycle route, and disabled-access parking. This will also be combined with a fire station and will feature a running-track and other communal spaces; creating this unconventional form provides a pure and evocative addition to Oslo’s innovative skyline.