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Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG)

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Superkilen won a 2016 Aga Khan Award for Architecture. The project also won a Citation in ARCHITECT's 2012 Annual Design Review and an AIA Honor Award in 2013.

Project Description


At almost a mile long, this urban park is positioned through one of the most ethnically diverse and socially challenged neighborhoods in Denmark. The project possesses all that typically makes up a modern park with trails for pedestrians and cyclists, outdoor recreation spaces, a market space and games areas. Superkilen is divided into three zones: the red square, the black market and the green park and is conceived as a giant exhibition of urban best practice - a collection of global objects from the 60+ home countries of the local inhabitants.


A meeting place for residents of Denmark’s most ethnically diverse neighbourhood and an attraction for the rest of the city, this project was approached as a giant exhibition of global urban best practice. In the spring of 2006 the street outside the architects’ Copenhagen office erupted in vandalism and violence. Having just gone through the design of a Danish mosque in downtown Copenhagen, BIG chose to focus on those initiatives and activities in urban spaces that work as promoters for integration across ethnicity, religion, culture and languages. Taking their point of departure as Superkilen’s location in the heart of outer Nørrebro district, the architects decided they would approach the project as an exercise in extreme public participation. Rather than a public outreach process geared towards the lowest common denominator or a politically correct post rationalisation of preconceived ideas navigated around any potential public resistance, BIG proposed public participation as the driving force of the design. An extensive public consultation process garnered suggestions for objects representing the over 60 nationalities present locally to be placed in the area. The 750-metre-long scheme comprises three main zones: a red square for sports; a green park as a grassy children’s playground; and a black market as a food market and picnic area.
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