Kiruna needs to create a place to move the city to. The place should welcome and encourage a denser city, right next to an open landscape. The memory of what the city already has built up, but has had to leave behind, helps to create this place.
When Kiruna moves, with its City Hall first, we want the memory of Arthur von Schmalensee’s City Hall to lay the ground for the new. Schmalensee’s bell tower is moved to the new location and it brings with it the constructive grid of the City Hall, which is then used to develop the site through its field of memories and projections.
First, birch trees are planted in the pattern of the grid. The birches mark a first meeting between the landscape and the built. Their stocks dampens the carbon emissions resulting from construction. As the city grows, birch trees are moved or used to make room for buildings.
We suggest that Kiruna City Hall is once again written as a square in plan. The square marks and structures, but does not exclude by inferring an axial directionality. The square expands the pragmatic grid and allows for shapes to find their place in the city.
Concrete volumes grow out of the new urban floor and form public spaces within and inbetween themselves. The moldable stone rooms are specific and boast key features such as art room, library and city council. Above rests a light mesh of wood that lifts the workplaces from the ground and extends all the offices out, towards the light and the view.
Area: 10 000 kvm