Private and public developers have great focus on sustainability

In relation to developing properties, there may be great value potential in optimising and revitalising both whole properties and individual rental premises. Mangor & Nagel Architects has wide experience in precisely this type of assignment.

Mangor & Nagel Architects is one of Denmark’s largest firms of architects with more than 100 employees in Copenhagen, Frederikssund and Roskilde. In the past 10 years, they have constructed or completely renovated more than 500,000 m2 throughout Denmark. They have received a large number of awards for their buildings, including the City of Copenhagen’s Building Award 2017 for best residential building project with Amaryllis Hus on Grønttorvet in Valby.

Søren Arildskov, Head of Development at Mangor & Nagel Architects, says: “In addition to great emphasis on quality at all stages of the building processes, sustainability plays an increasingly important part in our projects. We’re pleased that the majority of private and public developers are highly committed to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, the DGNB certification, the Nordic Swan Ecolabel, etc., which cover a wide range of sustainability issues. Sustainability has become a permanent part of virtually all projects and building programmes, and the developers’ sustainability ambitions are continuously growing. This is very positive – and inspiring.”

This can be seen in the drawing office’s current project – Køge Kyst, where the client, PensionDanmark and Køge Kyst P/S, are creating a diverse and sustainable urban area with a very strong environmental profile and a high standard of architecture and materials. Sustainability has been incorporated widely in the whole project – from biodiversity and circular economy to compliance with several of the UN Sustainable Development Goals and an ambition for DGNB Gold certification.

“For us, sustainability is very much about resilience. Resilience both in terms of building practices, robustness and materials and in relation to social sustainability – how we live, how we create attractive cities, and that our buildings must be robust. We must look ahead and work on a long-term basis, but we must also find the potential offered by existing elements that can create new value,” says Søren Arildskov.

St. Kongensgade in Copenhagen is a good example of how to create new value based on an existing building. The project consists of a front building from 1794, a back building and an old printing house from 1930, which were converted into homes. In addition, a six-floor house was designed with one home on each floor.

The Head of Development says: “It was a particularly interesting project due to the diverse architecture and history of the buildings. The focus of the conversion was to reuse and reestablish as many rooms, stucco and doors as possible, thus creating new, good homes with respect for and a cohesion with history. It’s highly inspiring to renew the old architectural framework and breathe new life into it in this way.”

Social sustainability and resilient cities

Resilience is also about socially sustainable cities and homes. In addition to working with subsidised housing and accessibility housing projects, Mangor & Nagel also works to create a framework for resilient communities.

“In order to create well-functioning and attractive cities, there is a need to think innovatively about how to live, how to promote diversity in the city and create urban neigh-bourhoods where there is room for everyone – and which are attractive and function in the long term. We therefore have great focus on, for example, the composition of residents when we develop housing projects,” says Søren Arildskov.

One example is the senior housing community Kamelia Hus on Grønttorvet with homes and community for active citizens aged over 60. The senior citizens live side by side with families with children, and there are also youth housing, large penthouse apartments and, over time, a large green park in the heart of the new district