Stockholm snapshots | part I

Slussen | Stockholm
Slussen | Stockholm

Strolling through Stockholm on a Saturday morning. In a first series of snapshots MovingCities documents a walk from the South to the North of this archipelago city. Starting early morning in the deserted area around the Medborgarplatsen subway station we moved north to Slussen.

Built in the mid-1930s, Slussen is a prime candidate for a re-examination of large-scale Modernist planning. Designed to link two sides of the historic city, its concrete entry ramps curl around a cylindrical office building before stretching over an underground bus terminal and the massive locks that regulate boat traffic between Lake Malaren and the Baltic Sea.

This traffic plaza was recently subject to an architectural competition. The proposals from Sir Norman Foster, Jean Nouvel, BIG, Nyréns Architects and Gert Wingårdh Architect can be found on Bustler while the New York Times saw in the entries for this competition an excuse to hint at a clash between different generations of architects.

The competition encourages us to ponder those values with a fresh, unbiased eye. The most intriguing of the five designs can be separated more or less into two categories: those that try to bring clarity and order to the jumbled traffic systems, and those that seek to draw the bustling energy of the old city across the site.

From Slussen we walked North, through the dense historic area of Gamla Stan, into NorrMalam. Although not exactly visible on the snapshots, at first impression Stockholm looks and feels like a city where urban and architectural development projects in the past decades have been integrated seamlessly within the existing urban tissue. This created in the center of the city an urban space without conflicts in style and scale, except, as one can see at the bottom, in those central areas where 1970s business districts were brought in.

Area in-between Slussen and Medborgarplatsen | Stockholm
Area in-between Slussen and Medborgarplatsen | Stockholm

Gamla Stan | Stockholm
Gamla Stan | Stockholm

Norrmalm | Stockholm
Norrmalm | Stockholm

Pictures by movingcities.org

Leave a Reply