A few years ago in the small Jutlandic town, Laasby, you would find an old factory area being overtaken by grass and bushes day by day. No one used the area or had any relation to it. Nearby you would find a home for the elderly, which back in 2013 found its basements flooded by enormous amounts of rain caused by climate change. Instead of seeing rain as a problem that only has to be removed we started investigating alternative options in the field of landscape architecture. Today Laasby Sea Park makes use of the rainwater as a resource to transform the old industrial area into a livable park full of fun activities, which moreover makes the town landscape unique and an attractive place to live and stay.
In the fall of 2016 a great amount of small paper boats were put in the water to the opening of the new recreational activity park. Half of the town was gathered to celebrate the park, which was designed in close cooperation with the citizens of Laasby. Laasby Sea Park is constructed with three storm water reservoirs that strengthen the landscape against the rising volumes of rain in the future. The reservoirs work with three different levels of water; for normal levels, for 5-year floods and for 100-year floods, which make the Sea Park a lasting solution in the future.
Special designed cross-fit elements are placed around and within the reservoirs. The sculptural elements can both be used for physical training and as play installations for children. When hit by a 5-year rain event, a part of the elements will be hidden by water but you will still be able to access the facilities. During the 100-year rain event a great part of the facilities are under water and only work as sculptural elements rather than workout areas. So no matter the level of the water, there’s still something going on in the park worth visiting. The landscape is always changing in a dynamic mirroring nature.
Around the water reservoirs you will find a 0.5 miles long walking path that connects the area and invites children, adults and elderly to explore the Sea Park. The path takes you to a beach volleyball court, a nature inspired playground, a hilly landscape for skateboarding and a resting area constructed as wooden sitting steps down to one of the water reservoirs.
Laasby Sea Park has recently been awarded The Architecture Award of Skanderborg Municipality 2017. Furthermore the project has been financial supported with 6 million DKK by The Danish Foundation for Culture and Sports Facilities, Realdania and The Danish Outdoor Council. The foundations hope that this unique climate-park will become a demonstration project for climate change solutions, which will inspire other suburban areas facing similar challenges.