Timber town in public park will reconnect residents to nature

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Örnsro Trästad will cover an area of about 18,000 sq m (194,000 sq ft)

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As city neighborhoods go, Örnsro Trästad – or Örnsro Timber Town – will be about as green and serene as they come. The planned development will be built from the ground up as neighborhood and a public park in equal measure, with buildings made of wood.

The concept for Örnsro Trästad, which will cover an area of about 18,000 sq m (194,000 sq ft) in the center of Swedish town Örnsro, was designed by C.F. Møller Architects and C.F. Møller Landscape, in partnership with developer Slättö Förvaltning. It was the winning entry in a design competition held by Örebro Municipality and the Swedish Association of Architects for the right to build on the site.

C.F. Møller Architects describes the planned Örnsro Trästad, not unreasonably, as a "visionary residential quarter." The aim, it says, is to create an "extraordinary" and "vibrant" area that will act as "new impulse in the city."

"We wish to create an including urban quarter in which the city's urban and social qualities interact with the park's organic structures," says Ola Jonsson, project architect at C.F. Møller. "The proposal illustrates a vision with the objective to create an exciting place in Örebro, of unique value, with innovative architecture."

That architecture will comprise several apartment buildings of varying heights and around 250 apartments in total. The buildings will all have timber frame structures, aimed at contributing to a more environmentally sound city. As C.F. Møller Architects points out, as well as being renewable, timber is a material with low energy consumption and a limited carbon footprint, but it also offers architectural forms that other materials do not.

"For us, it is an obvious choice to choose solid wood for structure as well as façades of wood," explains Jonsson. "In addition to contributing positively to the environment, wood gives us new opportunities to create innovative and value-creating architecture."

Beyond the wooden buildings, the area itself will be green, with the urban landscape integrated into what will essentially be parkland. Grass-covered areas will be intersected by walkways that connect the community with the surrounding areas, and there will be plazas for social meetings and recreation. The design renderings also show trees, lakes and waterfront activities.

The construction of Örnsro Trästad is scheduled to begin in 2017.

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