The design for the surroundings of the new Deichmanske Library underlines the idea of the library as an open building and part of the public space. A floating underlay beneath the building interconnects interior and exterior areas. This urban carpet consists of granite paving. Similar to a woven carpet, a subtle pattern of alternating rough and smooth stone surfaces is created. Skylights are integrated into the paved carpet in order to provide the subterranean multipurpose hall with sunlight and strengthen the connection to the underground venues.

As the area is situated on the historical borderline between the old Oslo east of Akerselva River and the Kvadraturen in the west, two light trails/axes in the ground symbolically connect the site with both parts. Mist sprays in the ground along the lights create colorful illuminated vapor providing a mystical atmosphere especially at night. At the same time the square can be transform into one big screen. Images, patterns and text extracts which are manipulable by mobile phone interaction can be projected from the overhang of the library.

The westernmost part of the carpet is covered by an accessible water film that reflects the sky. Arriving from the newly planned train station one looks over the sky-mirror to the fjord. In the winter time the sky mirror turns into an ice-rink. The water film can also be removed in order to give space for events and festivals on the square.

  • Program / Project: OSLO / Deichmanske Library
  • Client: HAV Eiendom
  • Project management: Agence Ter, Lund Hagem Arkitekter + Atelier Oslo
  • Area: 1,7 ha
  • Date: 2009-2012
  • Location: Oslo, Norway
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OSLO / Deichmanske Library