Restaurant Spritfabrikkerne Aalborg
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Aalborg Akvavit Distillery – the Silo Building

In 2015, Elgaard Architecture conducted a feasibility study for Cloud City Aalborg as regards Aalborg Akvavit Distillery’s listed industrial site. Currently, Elgaard Architecture has presented a concept for the ongoing preliminary dialogue on the preservation and transformation of Aalborg Akvavit Distillery’s silo building. The brief focuses on the challenge of introducing recreational spaces into the only original concrete building on the site, which is sealed off from public access and daylight.



Transformation of former silo building into restaurant and nano-brewery

Cloud City Aalborg

Briq Group, BIG, EKJ Lindgaard

Lounge bar øverste etage silobygning

Conservation and Development
The ambitious vision for Cloud City Aalborg aims to give life to the listed place without compromising the architectural and historical values ​​that document its identity. A true balancing act to find the right connection between development and conservation, or “use through protection”, as the Agency for Culture and Palaces defines it.

The silo building will be a unique space for culinary experiences and an innovative nano-brewery. The core of the programming has focused on involving the users of the future facilities in the distillery’s production craft as well as exposing them to the local history and tradition, all of which will be orchestrated in spaces in which art and architecture do not go unnoticed.

Spritfabrikken Aalborg diagram Elgaard Architecture
Existing industrial functions: Flow of raw materials from the top loading area to the storage chambers in the silo building and to the lower unloading cones
Spritfabrikken Aalborg diagram Elgaard Architecture
Suggestions for recreational functions: The public's course around the building on the multiple floor levels and through the concrete silo chambers
Spritfabrikkerne Aalborg siloerne
The 18 concrete silo chambers seen from the outside after the Aalborg Akvavit Distillery closed in 2012.
Studies of the experience of and the relationship between the individual silo chambers' potential spaces and users

Breaking Down the Elements
The architect behind the facility, Alfred Cock-Clausen (1886-1983), laid down the foundation for a sharp and homogeneous industrial architecture with his design. Red and yellow brick runs through the facades of the industrial site with rhythm and elegance, only to be interrupted by the concrete silo chambers.

In order to apply an appropriate level of transformation, we will break down the different elements of the building – an essential step towards a holistic result.

Spritfabrikkerne Aalborg indgang
Visualisation of the entrance to the restaurant with low-ceilinged spaces leading to the main large hall
Spritfabrikkerne Aalborg enscape
Visualisation of the private dining area in the silos with a view into the hall
Volumetric massing development

Volumetric Massing of the Silos
The concept behind the massing which opens up for greater spaces for recreational facilities was inspired by the city of Venice. The explorative sensation of moving through the variety of its magical streets was recreated in the interior flow by fluctuating and bending the floor plane that cut through the mysterious and dark silos. The three-dimensional concrete containers of void can be associated with the aethereal feeling of floating, by pushing the levels of exploration both horizontally and vertically.

Sections of the proposal

The second part of the concept development focuses on the lower and upper floors of the building  in which the loading and unloading areas were located in the heyday of the factory.

Visualisation of the lounge area on the ground floor mezzanine
Current conditions on the ground floor
“The industrial facilities form part of the cultural narrative about ourselves and our society, and the most prominent of them are listed. ”

Raw Industrial Cultural Heritage
The elements of the industrial cultural heritage are preserved and contribute to the raw beauty behind the beautiful 20th-century facades. Innovative and engaging activities will form part of the building’s functions and make it part of the future vision for the area.

Visualisation to the left: The proposed bar-restaurant on the ground floor

Studies of design strategies for the creation of recreational areas in the closed silo spaces