The Loop is part of a larger strategy of architectural intervention intended to improve the social conditions in the Værebro Park through emphasizing a connection between the local public indoor swimming pool, the local public school and the area’s apartment buildings.
The Loop is intended to function as a sort of social artwork – a relaxed and informal social meeting place for the residents of the area. Located between an indoor swimming pool, the local school and the 1400 dwellings of the Værebro Park, The Loop aims to create a physical and mental bridge between the different users of the area. The low budget yet esthetical element is designed as a playful path offering a variation of activities.
The Loop is a steel construction, a single metal ribbon, which extends continuously over a public park area in the Værebro Park housing estate. This ribbon of weathering steel meanders through the park area, creating a path, slide and aerial walkway. Covering an area of approximately 500 square meters, it does a loop around a wildflower meadow and crosses an existing path, before connecting with a gentle ramp. The ramp continues to rise as it loops around a cluster of trees, then slopes back down and passes underneath itself. As it approaches a concrete wall enclosing another part of the park, the steel surface slopes steeply to form a slide with a polished surface that intersects with the top of the wall. Tensioned wires create a minimal balustrade around the elevated sections of the walkway, while the sides of the slide are formed of steel profiles that taper as they descend towards the ground. A cantilevered box that extends from the highest point of the concrete wall provides a viewing platform overlooking the entire park.
Holscher Nordberg Architects developed the project in a process of co-creation with the local community. We organized interactions with the local community to chart the needs and dreams of the local residents. This was a very meaningful experience that helped us get a better feeling for what we could do with the physical environment in order to initiate a positive development and a bigger feeling of community in the area. The result is The Loop. In addition, this strategy of user involvement created a sense of mutual ownership over the project, which is an important factor in order to make this type of public projects fulfill their intentions and potential.