Nordhaven Urban Planning

Surface - Copenhagen. harbour - Nordhavnen

‘Surface’ and its Strategies

In 2008, Copenhagen City and Port Development called for an open international ideas competition searching for a sustainable city of the future. The site is an existing harbour called “Nordhavnen”. Reclaimed for port activity, land is dissected by series of water ways, offering most of the land with view to the water. However, the ecology and activity on the site is on the decline. There is not much big tree on the site. 
The proposed scheme explores how manmade surface can co-exist with natural surface and further more, complement nature’s establishment while not disrupting urban function/growth. We envision a strategy that is not just attaching roof garden to the building, but a planning which will allow critical mass of natural surface to thrive along side urban development.  

‘Ring’ shape is the basis of our proposal. The first infrastructure we proposed to do is planting of trees. In the first phase, fast growing trees (e.g. pine tree) are planted along the ‘Ring’ around an area which saplings of local forest perennial tree are planted.  The fast growing trees ring will protect the young forest from harsh weather condition allowing them to mature into a ‘Forest Sanctuary’.

Urban development will then takeover the fast growing trees surface cultivating its timber for construction and decoration. ‘Forest Sanctuary’ continues to grow and mature over the time and serves as urban park, home to animals, and climate mitigation. Within ‘Forest Sanctuary’ wet land is proposed to produce energy from tidal changes and for waste treatment. The ‘Ring’ is multiplied and mutated in different size, shape and form responding to different needs of urban expansion. By doing this, the urban strategy resemble the agricultural process which can be cultivated and evolved over a period of time. ‘Ring’ is also multiplied in vertical direction responding to high density needs. By stacking, terracing and subtracting, outdoor life with greenery or individual/communal farming can take place on the sky. Urban surface is fused with natural surface.

‘Rings’ of urban surface will protect the ‘Forest Sanctuary’ and in turn ‘Forest Sanctuary’ will become a greater ‘Ring’ to protect our environment. This demonstrates how a planning can contribute to ‘Protect’ and ‘Grow’ our nature.