BIG completes its trilogy of housing with the 8 House in Copenhagen

• October 31, 2010

8 House by Copenhagen architects BIG – Bjarke Ingels Group has been completed recently. Celebrating its third project with the same development team in the maturing neighborhood of Orestad, the construction of the 61,000 m2 8 House has come to an end, allowing people to bike all the way from the street up to its 10th level penthouses alongside terraced gardens where the first residents have already moved in.

Diagrams by BIG 595x530 BIG completes its trilogy of housing with the 8 House in Copenhagen

8 House - Diagram, drawing courtesy BIG

The bowtie-shaped 61,000 m2 mixed-use building of three different types of residential housing and 10,000 m2 of retail and offices comprises Denmark’s largest private development ever undertaken. Commissioned by St. Frederikslund and Per Hopfner in 2006, the 8 House sits on the outer edge of the city as the southern most outpost of Orestad. Rather than a traditional block, the 8 House stacks all ingredients of a lively urban neighborhood into horizontal layers of typologies connected by a continuous promenade and cycling path up to the 10th floor creating a three-dimensional urban neighborhood where suburban life merges with the energy of a big city, where business and housing co-exist.

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8 House, image courtesy BIG | Photo by Jens Lindhe

We have now completed three remarkable buildings in Orestad, the VM Houses, The Mountain and finally the 8 House – which is the sole result of a good and constructive collaboration with talented young architects who had a good understanding for the economical aspects

Per Hopfner, Hopfner Partners

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8 House, image courtesy BIG | Photo by Dragor Luftfoto

The 8 House creates two intimate interior courtyards, separated by the centre of the cross which houses 500 m2 of communal facilities available for all residents. At the very same spot, the building is penetrated by a 9 meter wide passage that allows people to easily move from the park area on its western edge to the water filled canals to the east. Instead of dividing the different functions of the building – for both habitation and trade – into separate blocks, the various functions have been spread out horizontally.

The apartments are placed at the top while the commercial programme unfolds at the base of the building. As a result, the different horizontal layers have achieved a quality of their own: the apartments benefit from the view, sunlight and fresh air, while the office leases merge with life on the street. This is emphasized by the shape of 8 House which is literally hoisted up in the Northeast corner and pushed down at the Southwest corner, allowing light and air to enter the southern courtyard

Thomas Christoffersen, Partner in Charge, 8 House, BIG

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8 House, image courtesy BIG | Photo by Jens Lindhe

A continuous public path stretches from street level to the penthouses and allows people to bike all the way from the ground floor to the top, moving alongside townhouses with gardens, winding through an urban perimeter block. Two sloping green roofs totaling 1,700 m2 are strategically placed to reduce the urban heat island effect as well as providing the visual identity to the project and tying it back to the adjacent farmlands towards the south.

8 House is a three-dimensional neighborhood rather than an architectural object. An alley of 150 rowhouses stretches through the entire block and twists all the way from street level to the top and down again. Where social life, the spontaneous encounter and neighbor interaction traditionally is restricted to the ground level, the 8 House allows it to expand all the way to the top

Bjarke Ingels, Founding Partner, BIG

8H Image by Jens Lindhe 09 BIG completes its trilogy of housing with the 8 House in Copenhagen

8 House, image courtesy BIG | Photo by Jens Lindhe

8H Image by Ty Stange 10 595x396 BIG completes its trilogy of housing with the 8 House in Copenhagen

8 House, image courtesy BIG | Photo by Ty Stange

The 8 House uses size to its advantage by creating immense differences in height thereby creating a unique sense of community with small gardens and pathways that remind you of the intimacy of an Italian hill town. With spectacular views towards the Copenhagen Canal and Kalvebod Faelled’s protected open spaces, 8 House provides residences to people in all of life’s stages through its 476 housing units, including apartments of varied sizes, penthouses and townhouses as well as office spaces to the city’s business and trade in one single building.

8H Image by Jens Lindhe 17 BIG completes its trilogy of housing with the 8 House in Copenhagen

8 House, image courtesy BIG | Photo by Jens Lindhe

8 House is our second realized example of architectural alchemy – the idea that by mixing traditional ingredients, retail, rowhouses and apartments in untraditional ways – you create added value if not gold. The mix allows the individual activities to find their way to the most ideal location within the common framework – the retail facing street, the offices towards northern light and the residences with sun and views to the open spaces. 8 House is a perimeter block that morphs into a knot, twisting and turning to maximize the life quality of its many inhabitants

Bjarke Ingels, Founding Partner, BIG

+ Project credits / data

Project: 8 House
Size: 61,000 m2, 476 Residences
Cost: Eur 92,000,000
Location: Copenhagen, DK
Status Completion: 2010

Client: St. Frederikslund Holding
Architect: BIG – Bjarke Ingels Group
Collaboration: Hopfner Partners, Moe & Brodsgaard, KLAR
Photography: Jens Lindhe, Ty Stange, Dragor Luftfoto

Partner-In-Charge: Bjarke Ingels, Thomas Christoffersen
Project Leader: Ole Elkjaer-Larsen, Henrick Poulsen
Project Manager: Finn Norkjaer, Henrik Lund
Team: Dennis Rasmussen, Rune Hansen, Agustin Perez Torres, Annette Jensen, Carolien Schippers, Caroline Vogelius Wiener, Claus Tversted, David Duffus, Hans Larsen, Jan Magasanik, Anders Nissen, Christian Alvarez Gomez, Hjalti Gestsson, Johan Cool, James Duggan Schrader, Jakob Lange, Kirstine Ragnhild, Jakob Monefeldt, Jeppe Marling Kiib, Joost Van Nes, Kasia Brzusnian, Kasper Broendum Larsen, Louise Heboell, Maria Sole Bravo, Ole Nannberg, Pablo Labra, Pernille Uglvig Jessen, Peter Rieff, Peter Voigt Albertsen, Peter Larsson, Rasmus Kragh Bjerregaard, Richard Howis, Soeren Lambertsen, Eduardo Perez, Ondrej Tichy, Sara Sosio, Karsten Hammer Hansen, Christer Nesvik, Soeren Peter Kristensen, Lacin Karaoz, Marcello Cova, Luis Felipe González Delgado, Janghee Yoo, SunMing Lee

+ All images, drawings and description courtesy BIG

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Category: Architecture, Mixed Use, Residential, Selected

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