Frederiksberg Allé 41

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Fitting in and
standing out

Year: First prize in competition 2016, completed 2020

Client: Union Holding and NRE Denmark A/S

Program: Food and culture house, and residential complex, build on top of metro station

Size: 3,500 m²

Frederiksberg Allé 41 is a new addition to one of Copenhagen’s most prominent boulevards. It is home to a food and culture house including food stalls, workshops and cultural facilities with an apartment building and a green inner courtyard above. As the first of its kind in Denmark, the building itself is placed directly over one of Copenhagen’s new metro stations providing a vibrant entrance plaza for the station. Completing a vacant corner site along the historic boulevard of Frederiksberg Allé, it adapts to its immediate surroundings and enhances the unique cultural heritage of Frederiksberg. The building on one hand fits in, and on the other hand, it stands out. In addition to becoming a new infrastructural node for public transport, Frederiksberg Allé 41 is also a social and cultural focal point in the neighborhood- with its food and cultural functions. It is a new gateway to the neighborhood and its nearby theaters, museums, and parks, and also generator of urban life, reinforcing Frederiksberg’s position as an vibrant and important destination within the Danish capital.

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Frederiksberg Allé 41 is built on top of an underground metro station, creating a covered public space in connection with the entrance to the metro.

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The building consists of three overall elements: 1) the flex zone, a public space on the ground floor providing access to the underground metro station, lined with shops and food stalls, 2) the green courtyard build on top of a concrete slab and columns, and 3) a housing development articulated as a series of townhouses, which encloses the courtyard.

The tree-lined, Parisian-inspired boulevard of Frederiksberg Allé is one of the most significant historic boulevards in the Danish capital. It was established in the 1700’s as the King’s road leading from the city center to Frederiksberg Palace and its surrounding garden. Today, the boulevard is the entrance to a large number of cultural and recreational activities in Copenhagen including several theaters, museums, parks and the zoo.

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The fabric of Frederiksberg Allé is made of a number of historic, listed buildings, many of which are constructed in brick and feature unique attention to both materiality and detailing. All of the corner-buildings that line Frederiksberg Allé have a unique architectural feature: towers and spires.

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The building completes a once missing corner site on Frederiksberg Allé.

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It marks the corner with a tower-inspired volume.

Frederiksberg Allé 41 adapts to its historical context, in its scaling down to a series of brick townhouse volumes, stepping inward and upward to form a tower at the site’s prominent corner, overlooking the boulevard – a contemporary interpretation of the historic corner towers of Frederiksberg Allé.

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Public space with a
sparkling ceiling

The ground floor and mezzanine levels are home to a food and culture house, featuring public facilities such as food stalls, a flower shop, a coffee bar, workshops, and an event space. The public realm surrounding the escalators & elevators leading to the metro station below is lined with culinary experiences, and the overlooking mezzanine offers experiences of a cultural kind, with an event space for workshops, yoga and concerts.

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The ground floor and the mezzanine

The ceiling of the public realm consists of triangulated, polished panels, reflecting the urban life and activities that unfold daily below it, including the busy entrance to the metro station. Unlike the other and more standardized metro extrances throughout Copenhagen, this one is distinct: an open square tucked into the building above, where passengers can seamlessly descend to catch a train.

At Frederiksberg Allé 41, the metro station entry is defined as a covered public space, not only an architectural destination, but one animated by the surrounding program. Instead of a pure commuting experience, the access to and from the metro station is a lively urban meeting point. When ascending from the underground, metro travelers arriving to Frederiksberg Allé are met by a sparking roof covering the public space.

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Five contemporary,
brick townhouses

The housing development is shaped by five distinct townhouse volumes containing 30 different housing units, hovering above the food and culture house and the new enlarged and enlived public realm. Shaped like the letter-L, the building fills in the corner at the intersection of Frederiksberg Allé and an adjacent street. A corner, which for almost a century, was a gap in the otherwise continuous row of historic fabric buildings lining the boulevard.

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The building is expressed as the grouping of smaller townhouse volumes.

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Details from the historic buildings along Frederiksberg Allé.

The outward facing facades of Frederiksberg Allé 41 celebrate the unique and tactile qualities of brick architecture. This approach relates directly to the surrounding historic buildings, playing upon the lines, patterns and window openings of the neighboring façades. It is a contemporary expression of an almost timeless way of building, securing its place within the context for many years into the future.

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A green, urban oasis
in Frederiksberg
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The courtyard stands in contrast to the brick architecture of the outer facades with its wood cladding, exterior terraces, walkways and staircases. It is the central, outdoor common space for all residents- a place for social interaction and recreation. This rich and textured inner oasis provides a framework for the community of residents living within. It is a space where all forms of family life gather and where neighbors meet.

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Larger families are able to unfold their lives in terraced houses, distributed over 2-3 floors, younger residents and singles in smaller studios, and on the top floor there is a singular large penthouse apartment. All housing units have access to the private, enclosed courtyard - a small oasis at the heart of Frederiksberg Allé.

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Location: Frederiksberg, Copenhagen, Denmark

Client: Union Holding and NRE Denmark A/S

Program: Food and culture house, and residential complex, build on top of metro station

Size: 3,500 m²

Year: First prize in competition 2016, completed 2020

Collaborators: Arne Elkjær, Wissenberg, NRE Denmark

Team: Andreas Jørgensen, Anna Pieranska, Arvis Tarts, Christian Sander, Claes Nilsson, Clement Bue Maali, Connor Forecast, Dan Stubbergaard, Dorte Buchardt Westergaard, Kasper Bak Mikkelsen, Kristoffer Harling, Mads Lützen, Margarita Nutfulina, Marine Pierson, Mark Aron Thomsen, Matilda Andersson, Mikkel Reedtz Morris, Milan Milenkovski, Nina Mathiesen, Peter Laust Røhr Hønnicke, Rasmus Hjortshøj, Rasmus Lassen, Sonia Bom, Steffen Ommundsen, Søren Jeppe Sørensen, Thomas Krarup, Tonny Jensen

Certifications: DGNB Silver

Photographer: Rasmus Hjortshøj - COAST

Additional photos: Frederiksberg Kommune