Between Fjords | MOST_Monti Olgiati STudio

Europan 13 - Os, Norway Osøyro / Norway / 2015

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Manifesto of the delicate transition is about OS in the new settlement region system, the project want to relink the fragmented parts of the Municipality rediscovered the direct connection with the river and the surrounding landscape. Become a natural/artificial focal point “by” and “for” the future city development as a continuity of the local identity and a fertile ground for the coming up generations.


OS, a small village in the southern area of Bergen, is about to change his status of village and becoming a town.
In this delicate transition is playing an important role the site area that allows the city centre to take over his waterfront, reconquering a relationship with the water that had characterized the development and activities of the Village. Born as a craftsmen village, it had the strength during the industrial period to improve these activities in the communication and administration of the center. Nowadays, is required to Os to improve his role in the region system developing into a more complex society.


The project starts from this point to generate an opportunity to rediscover an urban personality but at the same time to not lose the local identity. To reach this target, it’s important to include in the project’s program permanent or temporary activities to allow this important part of the city to be nurtured by presence of people in different parts of the day and the year. There is a passage in the book of Hannah Arendt, Vita Activa, which describes this point talking about the problem that grips our society as a lack of our surrounding spaces power to link people together.
Currently, Os is suffering his planning fragmentation increases by natural elements, such as the river and substantial height differences, and the manmade barriers such as infrastructures and streets that create resulting spaces with a higher potentiality but not to take advantage of them. The project wants to start from these aspects and tries to work with them, not just delete the current area program but to rethink it flanking with new uses.
The Proposal wants to become an opportunity for the municipality of Os to link these separate cores taking advantage of powerful position of the area. Reconnecting the center with the town hall, the town plaza, the church and local activities supported by future projects with the commerce and business area beyond the river and the housing, cultural and leisure area in the South searching and improving the relationship with the rediscovered waterfront.


Arranged on a flat terrain in the bottom of the valley, the project takes care of the different points of view on the site: starting from the main street to the surrounding hills, and from the water to near town hall. Three different approaches to the project had defined the aim of the Proposal:
- Arriving from the South by car, the view runs in a narrow passage draw like a natural fjord between the two building continuing to the Os centre.
- Arriving from the water, the complex resembles natural rocks of the Norwegian landscape drawing a new profile to the city related with surrounding environment.
- Arriving from the city center, the blocks create a background to define the perimeter of public space in front of the town hall and at the same time an invitation to reach the water.


As emerged rocks, shaping by the city flows - the plan drawing remember the “Gaffesegl” composition of the boat that makes waves in the near river - and opening to the landscape, the complex adsorbs and rethinks the actual functions - petrol station, gas refueling and the restaurant/pizzeria - present in the site and two historical buildings integrate in the program with a main function of the Cinema/Theatre that could be seen like a catalyst of attraction at the region scale with some local activities to support the residences and workers that will liven up the area.


The main function was chosen in order to give an appropriate location to the WT International Film Festival organized in the Os’ municipality with the intent to suggest and improve the new-discovered essence of the City related with the culture and the events.
Flanked this function, which takes place in the building in front of the town hall, the two residential buildings are looking onto the river containing in the ground floor the local scale functions. Groceries will be opened along the river promenade to offer an opportunity to make a stop; it will take place in the site temporary or permanent cultural events, it will be opened the Fjord museum flanked by a climbing gym and a relaxing SPA with a thermal bath in front of the fjord; in the first floor of the biggest residential building there will be spaces for the rising way of sharing the work place: co-working ideal to reduce the fees of young people.
Also the residential building concept try to improve the local idea of living in single-family dwelling houses with private outside spaces in a residential blocks without loosing this quality, fighting against the suburban sprawl and diffused usage of the ground.
Different functions create the opportunity to make a stop before arriving in other points of the city, a place where local workers or inhabitants feel like they are a part of the city, or just a transition place.


The Proposal can be resume in four words > Connection - Permeability - Landscape - Mix/used

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    Manifesto of the delicate transition is about OS in the new settlement region system, the project want to relink the fragmented parts of the Municipality rediscovered the direct connection with the river and the surrounding landscape. Become a natural/artificial focal point “by” and “for” the future city development as a continuity of the local identity and a fertile ground for the coming up generations. OS, a small village in the southern area of Bergen, is about to...

    Project details
    • Year 2015
    • Client Os municipality and ESSO Norge
    • Status Competition works
    • Type multi-purpose civic centres / Adaptive reuse of industrial sites / Apartments / Multi-family residence / Office Buildings / Multi-purpose Cultural Centres / Cinemas / Shopping Malls / Showrooms/Shops / Bars/Cafés / Restaurants / River and coastal redevelopment / Media Libraries / Day-care centres
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