October 1, 2013
Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects has been announced as one of the five winners of the Nordic Built Challenge with plans for Urban Mountain – the tallest tower in Norway. Nordic Built Challenge is a design contest based around the refurbishment of existing buildings. The objective of the competition is to encourage the sustainable refurbishment of some of the most common building types in the Nordic region by showcasing innovation in major projects across the region. The other four winners of the competition were Ellebo Garden Room in Denmark, Cape Green in Iceland, Fittja People’s Palace in Sweden and Equlibrium in Finland. All of the winning entries can be viewed here.
The Urban Mountain project involved a proposal for the refurbishment and extension of Biskop Gunnerus Gate 14 in central Oslo, creating Norway’s tallest building. The 79,000 square meter refurbished tower aims to achieve BREEAM Outstanding certification and will employ Cradle to Cradle principles to reduce its energy consumption and environmental impact.
It is expected that Urban Mountain will recycle around 90 percent of existing materials following demolition , 80 percent of which would be directly incorporated into the refurbished building. Sustainable features of the project include solar chimneys, which run from the bottom to the top of the building, and a greenhouse on the rooftop.
“An important part of this project is to allow the sustainable measures to be visible to the users and the city, hereby raising awareness of how the building works,” according to John Lassen, founding partner of Schmidt Hammer Lassen. “For instance, when you look at the building from the outside the façade is characterized by a series of ‘green lungs.”