The Danish Distillers, Aalborg

2015 – 2017 | Aalborg, Denmark

Project: preliminary feasibility studies and programming
Area: 19.000 m2
Status: completed
Architect: ELGAARD Architecture
Service: client consultancy
Listed: yes

ELGAARD Architecture has for Realdania in collaboration with BIG and Balslev Lindgaard carried out a preliminary feasibility studies and programming of the Danish Distillers, Aalborg. The listed industrial site will be transformed into an art –and cultural quarter scheduled with an art centre, sculpture garden, museum and a liquor -and chocolate production adventure centre, market hall, boutique hotel, restaurants, luxury apartments at the waterfront, large furniture retailer, theatre and much more.

The landmark will be the work of art Cloud City created by the Argentinian artist Tomás Saraceno, consisting of 68 glass cubes each measuring 4.5 meters in diameter. Joined together the work of art will reach a height of 30 meters. Visitors can step into the creation via the roof on one of the existing buildings on site.

The purpose of the preliminary feasibility studies and programming is to analyse the existing buildings and site as a whole with a view to determine where and how the appropriate functions should be placed in the right setting paying respect to the authenticity and leading architectural and historical values.

Elgaard Architecture has lead the preliminary and on-going dialogue with the Agency for Culture and Palaces, who in the early stages of the planning of the site issued a principle statement regarding the interplay between preservation and function.

To meet the stated objective, we have likewise spearheaded an exhaustive process involving all central competences and interested parties, as well as all functional units have been programmed with involvement of future users. During the process, cross-functional workshops were held with attendance of the Agency for Culture and Palaces, Realdania, future users and Cloud City Aalborg, who is the principal organiser and owner of the project.

The preliminary feasibility studies and programming are relatively detailed in regards to design solutions within the listed buildings. The urban spaces are being approached on higher programmatic level and in this case, the preliminary feasibility studies could form the basis for an architectural competition for the key disposition of the urban spaces and specific urban design.

The indoor environment and fire safety strategies have as primary design parameters been analysed and conceptually addressed by the engineers of the team. The architects of the team have gathered all the parameters for the specific suggested design solutions, where alternatives for certain parts have been outlined.

The very detailed analytical complied work makes it possible for the Agency for Culture and Palaces to address the project very concretely when present preliminary feasibility studies and programming have to be valuated and a new principle statement issued. Hopefully, hereby the preliminary feasibility studies can contribute significantly in ensuring the financial foundation for the realisation of Cloud City Aalborg on the listed industrial site.

Photos: Dorthe Bendtsen, Racconto

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