Narratives By Country


Common Aims and Diverse Strategies

Buildings that are designed for high and lasting architectural, technical, and functional quality are more likely to be regarded as valuable and worthy of care by their users, owners, and the general public. In this regard, quality is a key condition for sustainability. The Norwegian architects featured in this conference are unified by their consistent efforts to address architectural and environmental performance as an intertwined challenge. They will present projects that embody a range of scales—from construction details to building designs to urban plans. Tine Hegli of Snøhetta will speak about interdiciplinary teamwork and the firm’s collaboration with researchers to ensure precision and transparency in energy performance calculations. Cathrine Vigander of Element Architects will demonstrate that viable strategies may be found outside the mainstream balance of energy measures, especially when it comes to the use of glass in urban settings. And Siv Helene Stangeland of Helen & Hard will discuss how the firm works closely with leading European experts in developing innovative timber architecture that reduces emissions and facilitates carbon storage.

—Marius Nygaard, Architect and Professor, Oslo School of Architecture and Design



Performance and Material [Re-]Use: Sustainable Drivers for New Danish Architecture

While energy performance has been a central part of Danish building legislation for almost half a century, a relatively new driver of sustainable building is the high-level use of building components. Over time, strict energy codes have been incorporated into Danish architecture at all levels. Yet pioneering architects are making great strides at reducing buildings’ energy consumption through design strategies that propose the use of new materials, technologies, and construction methods. Parallel to this scenario is an increased emphasis on the sustainable and cultural aspects of building renovation among Danish architects. This has sparked an interest in the retrieval and re-use of building components and materials, which also builds upon a longer tradition of architectural detailing in Danish architecture. The panel will feature a number of Danish architectural offices that are working across these various fields. Thomas Nørgaard of Christensen & Co. Architects will present design strategies for high performance buildings and integrated energy solutions for low CO2 emissions. Stig Mikkelsen of Mikkelsen Architects will discuss innovative material technologies and design solutions for energy optimization. And Soren Nielsen of Vandkunsten Architects will speak on reuse and design for disassembly, and salvageability in construction and circular economy.

—Anne Beim, MAA, Professor of Architectural Technology, Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts School of Architecture (Copenhagen), and Head of the Centre for Industrialized Architecture (CINARK)



Scales of Sustainability: Buildings + Systems + Urban Planning

With the growth of the welfare state in the postwar era, Sweden pioneered sustainability concepts in the planning and design of its urban environment, most notably in the “ABC” cities of Vällingby and Farsta built the late 1950s. (“ABC” referred to work, arbete, housing, bostäder, and commercial center, centrum.) This comprehensive approach to large-scale sustainable urban systems continued in the Stockholm region with Hammarby Sjöstad in the 1990s and the Royal Seaport, currently under construction. The Swedish approach to sustainability is distinguishable by its emphasis on integrating buildings into urban systems and consideration of all scales. The panel will feature Sarah Grahn of White Architects, who will discuss a range of sustainability challenges at the building scale. At the systems scale, Alexis Pontvik, MSA/SAR, AIS, RIBA, of Pontvik Arkitekter, present works that reflect a holistic Swedish approach. And Karolina Keyzer, the City Architect of Stockholm, will discuss how Stockholm is planning to accommodate one of the fastest growing urban populations in Europe to meet new sustainability demands.

—Erik Stenberg, Architect and Associate Professor, KTH School of Architecture and the Built Environment (Stockholm)