Old meets new, unconventional meets realism, way of life meets modern age. Whatever it might be, architecture is responding in bold ways throughout Europe. Rethinking placemaking, rethinking master planning, and thinking forward seems to be the new perspective.
North Harbour – Copenhagen
Historically rooted as a merchant harbor and an epicenter for Nordic trade, a few classic structures still stand proud. Copenhagen is also not shy to embrace the old and new, juxtaposing residential townhomes amongst contemporary structures. With time comes change and in Copenhagen change is bringing modern architecture to the forefront. Take a guided architectural boat tour and one will quickly see the diversity encompassing the landscape and the rebirth of the Harbour as an active and diverse setting. Whether it be the new modern residential and office complexes, the Royal Danish Opera House or even the Little Mermaid in the Harbour there is revolution in perspective of not only what today but also what tomorrow’s architecture will bring.
The beauty in all of it lies however in the careful master planning—within each building or district a deep rich story serves as the canvas for the design. Facing challenges like affordable housing they are evaluating residential and working environments like Union Container and considering expanding an entire neighborhood (schools, retail, etc.) too under this potential “container city”. Also the notion that place can support lifestyle in the simplest of terms rises to the top: take for example the Islands Brygge Harbor Bath bringing “open air swimming right in the center of the city.”
Whether you like each of the buildings designs or not, personal opinion aside, one must thank the Danish people collectively for their appreciation and respect for art, architecture and the foresight to think of tomorrow’s placemaking.