2014 - 2015
Sustainable heritage renovation
Affordable student housing in the old functionalist building
The Margretheholm islet in Copenhagen housed the Danish Navy for centuries. The constable school building from 1939 had been abandoned for decades and was technically in a bad shape.
In 2014, the entire islet was transformed into a new neighborhood that we designed for the developer group Sjælsø. With a relatively small budget, we were commisioned to also transform the listed building to accomodate affordable apartments for students.
Our approach was to maintain as much of the original and worn character of the building and emphasize the contrast between new and old.
The project won the Renovate Prize (RENOVERprisen) 2016 for best renovation.
Da Konstabelskolen er en af de eneste oprindelige bygninger på Margretheholm, var det vigtigt for os at få bevaret så meget som muligt af den oprindelige bygnings materialitet. Derfor er ydervæggene inde i lejlighederne helt rå og bygningen er isoleret udvendigt. For samtidigt at understrege den gamle murstensfacade, har vi friholdt udvalgte områder af den oprindelige facade. I den efterisolerede facade har vi sat overstørrelse vinduer i. På den måde forbliver den oprindelige teglmur omkring vinduesåbningerne synlig og boligerne får maksimalt dagslys, når muren her ikke er alt for tyk.
On the art of renovation
”We believe that the art of renovation contributes significantly to sustainable construction and refines the cultural ressources of our building culture. When we carefully preserve and transform beautiful buildings, it saves virgin ressources as well as life cycle energy ”
- Søren Nielsen, architect MAA, partner
The Constable School is one of Denmark’s early functionalist building, constructed in 1939. The facade is clad in exposed brick hiding that the building is constructed with columns and beams in the - at the time - new material reinforced concrete. Brick fill out the concrete frames for interior walls.
Colors and material heritage
The building is completely refurbished as small affordable apartments and the navy history is reflected in the selection of colors. Traditional colors seen in the column mosaic are used on the new floors in hallways, cast in the industrial material PUR. Blue and yellow could be found in the original building – grey is a new color and inspired from the color of the naval fleet.
Project name: Apartments in the Constable School
Client: Sjælsø Margretheholm A/S
Gross area: 3.400 m²
Date: 2014 - 2015
Number of units: 84 apartments
Cost of construction: DKK 38 mio
Program: Student apartments
Activity: Renovation and transformation
Job type: Commission
Construction system: Load-bearing concrete structure with masonry facades.
Contact: Søren Nielsen, firstname.lastname@example.org
Engineer: Erik Pedersen A/S
Consultant: Architect MAA Christoffer Pilgaard