Danish Power Plant by CF Møller Aalborg

Only in Europe would they have architectural competitions to design power stations; In North America Architects don't get a look-in at such things, the security and fencing consultant has more influence. In Skive, Denmark, CF Møller Aalborg wrapped 68 tons of copper around it. Says head architect Søren Tortzen to Icon Magazine: "Skive is a large residential town set in an entirely flat landscape and it was important to us that the station be something that was aesthetically appealing to the residents." (Of course they have similar concerns in cities like Toronto)

And of course it doesn't burn natural gas or coal, it is a combined heat and power (CHP) station burning new biomass technology.

Icon says that "The station is the first in the world to use a new biomass technology in the production of heat and electricity, and houses the largest biomass "gasifier" of its kind. The gasification tower has been adapted for visitors, who will be able to walk around the machine and on the galleries jutting at different levels. It is the central focus of the structure because it also has a view onto the fjords of Jutland. "We have emphasised the gasification tower by inserting the large 'eye' overlooking the fjord," says Tortzen. Here, the facade is entirely of glass so that visitors can enjoy the views from inside the station." ::Icon

The architect notes:

Skive CHP station is located on a ridge along the main road to the town of Skive — visible both from the fjord, the town and the nearby residential areas. The building's simple shapes and distinctive details signal 'power station' — shorn of all such familiar building features as doors, windows or storey divisions. The facades are clad with copper panels which, in a few years' time, will take on a warm tone and eventually, through the workings of time and weather, acquire a greenish patina with a fine play of colours and a beautiful depth. Visitors can observe the technical installation in operation from footbridges on several storeys in the large halls. The station is based on gas production from biomass, and is the first of its kind in the world.:CF Møller Aalborg

We can just imagine what would happen if someone tried to propose public walkways and overviews inside a power plant in North America. What is the balance?

Tags: Architecture | Denmark

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