Situated on the boundary between land and sea, the centre stands out like a large, radiant sculpture reflecting both sky and harbour space as well as the vibrant life of the city. The spectacular facades have been designed in close collaboration between Henning Larsen Architects, the Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson and the engineering companies Rambøll and ArtEngineering GmbH from Germany.
The Concert and Congress Centre of 29,000 m2 is situated in a solitary spot with a clear view of the enormous sea and the mountains surrounding Reykjavik. The Centre features an arrival- and foyer area in the front of the building, four halls in the middle and a backstage area with offices, administration, rehearsal hall and changing room in the back of the building. The three large halls are placed next to each other with public access on the south side and backstage access from the north. The fourth floor is a multifunctional hall with room for more intimate shows and banquets.
Seen from the foyer, the halls form a mountain-like massif that similar to basalt rock on the coast forms a stark contrast to the expressive and open facade. At the core of the rock, the largest hall of the Centre, the Concert Hall, reveals its interior as a red-hot center of force.
The project is designed in collaboration with the local architectural company, Batteriid Arkitekter.
+ Project credits / data
Project: Harpa Concert & Conference Centre
Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Gross floor area: 29,000 m2
Year of construction: 2007 – 2011
Type of assignment: First prize in international PPP-competition, 2005
Typology: Culture | Concert hall
Client: Austurnhofn TR – East Harbour Project Ltd.
Architects: Henning Larsen Architects | http://www.henninglarsen.com/ & Batteriid Architects
Landscape architects: Landslag efh
Artist: Olafur Eliasson
Operator and investor: Harpa / Portus Group
Engineers: ArtEngineering GmbH, Mannvit, Hnit Verkis and Rambøll
Photo: Ósbjørn Jacobsen, Henning Larsen architects