The historical Enghave Park, with some of Arne Jacobsen’s early designs, has now been respectfully transformed and is now the largest climate project in Copenhagen. With a 22.600 m3 (6 million gallons) water reservoir the park answers the need to handle future water challenges. The challenges are positively transformed into a large variety of new recreational, relaxation and sensory opportunities to be used both in an everyday situation and in the event of cloudburst.
The water is visibly and innovatively handled in the project using multifunctional cloudburst pools and a 550 m encircling water wall. The solutions hold back the extreme rain and at the same time create new living, sensory and recreative opportunities for everyday life. The strength of the project lies in the integration of the huge volume of water into the park’s neoclassical aesthetic and the project is thus the very first of its kind. The architects show that we can both preserve and rethink our common cultural heritage when the climate crisis hits the cities. And that we can positively involve more than 1 million annual visits in a reflection on our collective impact on the planet through just one public park.
HISTORICAL AND CLIMATE RESPONSIVE
Enghave Park has been an important recreative space at Vesterbro for more than 90 years. A respite for the working class living in the neighborhood. The park is built as a strict neoclassical park with a reflecting pool, geometric axes, playground, and stage. With the challenges like rising population growth and more frequent cloudburst, there is a need to rethink our urban spaces smarter and more multifunctional. The park has therefore been selected to become a key element in the cloudburst strategy for Vesterbro.
The listed park has been transformed into a climate project with a water reservoir for extreme amounts of rainwater. The transformation of the park has turned the water challenges to a variety of new experiences for recreation and interaction. By lowering some of the park’s spaces to collect water during cloudburst and by implementing a water wall in the outline of the park, the park can now retain a very large rainwater volume. The park resonds to both the everyday rain and the extreme rain events.
WATER MANAGEMENT AND PLAY
The water wall establishes the largest reservoir in the surface water management in Enghave Park and it is only supposed to function in extreme cases of flooding. At extreme cloudbursts, the gates in the wall will automatically be raised and the park will be filled with water. In the daily use the water will tell the story of the Climate Park and the water will be a recreational and educational element. The daily rain will be collected in the underground reservoir under the Rosegarden, filtered and reused for recreative purpose in a trench at the top of the wall encircling the entire park. The water is visual in all spaces and will communicate the important message of climate change.
The everyday rain from the roofs of the new development ‘Carlsberg City’ will be led to Enghave Park and be collected in a 2000 m3 underground reservoir. The collected rainwater can be used for sweepers and watering the trees of Copenhagen. The recycling of rainwater will save millions of liters of clean drinking water annually and is a shift in practice in Copenhagen.
The Enghave Park is a green breathing space for people and animals. 83 new trees have been planted in the park, spread across 10 different varieties. Most are planted in connection with the re-establishment of the alleys. The biodiversity in the garden is further enhanced by the 11,000 perennial plants, consisting of 55 different varieties in the Library garden as well as 950 fragrant roses planted in the Rose garden. All over the park 220,000 flower bulbs have been planted, which together with the rest of the planting will help make the park attractive to the eye and mind all year and create habitats for urban wildlife as insects and small animals.
NEOCLASSICAL DESIGN AND INNOVATIVE SOLUTION IN ONE
According to the original design and drawings from 1927, Arne Jacobsen’s stage and pavilions were the central objects in the park. In our design we preserve the classicist structure in the park and enforce it with the restoration of the tree alleys going through the park. The different areas in the park are formed in Enghave Park’s original character and designed with great additions of new experiences, learning spaces and social interaction.
The extreme climate impact on our historically sensitive cities demands adaptive and innovative architectural approaches. Our design for The Enghave Climate Park implies, that great innovations reach as deep into our cultural and historical roots as much as they point towards the future.
Other Advisors: COWI (Chief technical advisor), Platant (public dialogue facilitator)
Client: Copenhagen Municipality
Project location: Enghaveparken, 1761 København, Denmark
Design year: 2014-17
Year Built: 2019