Malmö Live is a newly opened cultural centre located by the canal on Universitetsholmen in Sweden’s Malmö. The 54.000 m2 centre consists of a concert hall, congress hall and three hotel towers and was designed by schmitt hammer lassen architects in collaboration with Skanska, Nordic Choice Hotels, Akustikon and SLA.
Focusing on modern Scandinavian architectural tradition, the team strived to make the complex a new landmark and focal point for the city of Malmö, which was the main inspiration behind it. The building is essentially an expression of the diversity and intimacy of Malmö and echoes characteristics of the surrounding city to create a place that blurs the boundaries between indoors and outdoors.
“The idea was to create a “house of the city” incorporating the architectonic expressions of Malmö to develop a building that will contribute to existing urban life,” says Kristian Ahlmark, senior partner at schmidt hammer lassen architects. “The context inspired our choice of materials and colours as well as the various sizes of the buildings’ areas, yet the building design itself points to the future.”
The building is divided into three sections and has entrances on all sides, meaning that it has no definitive front or back, creating a “city within the city”. Inside, the lobby becomes a street – inspired by curved, narrow streets of medieval cities – tying together the separate elements while forming small gathering places throughout to encourage visitors to gather together and enjoy the atmosphere and canal view.
While the outside of the building consists of windows and glazed tiles of white, gold and brown, the interior emulates the street life outside using mainly rough black concrete, stone, wood and brass – although the concert hall is distinctively outfitted in oak and brass.
“We worked in very close cooperation with Akustikon to achieve two things: an absolutely world-class sound and a room with a musicality that works with the music, like sitting inside an instrument. The result is a composition of cubic elements. Each surface has a function, angle and size that supports the acoustics. Light is integrated into the walls so the mood can be changed depending on what is being performed in the hall,” says Ahlmark.
Although the complex is certainly designed to appeal to the eye it also appeals to our love for the environment. Along with water absorbing green roofs and solar cells providing a portion of the building’s energy requirements, there are nesting boxes on the roofs to support of local birdlife and all food waste will be collected and turned into biogas.
In addition to the cultural centre a surrounding space of 27.000 m2 has been assigned for housing and commercial use. Skanska is developing apartment blocks, offices as well as retail premises to create an entire new neighbourhood in the center of Malmö.
Malmö Live officially opened May 2nd. New outdoor areas within Malmö Live will be inaugurated June 4th and the concert hall opening will be held August 26th-28th.
For more information about Malmö Live visit www.malmolive.se
Tags: architecture, hotel, nordic design, scandinavian design
Hugrún is an art and design enthusiast from Iceland, with a deep appreciation for aesthetics that deviate from the conventional.
Being born and raised in the Reykjavík region, she draws inspiration from the city’s quirky small-town culture, and the diversity and individuality of its inhabitants.
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