Frederiksberg Courthouse, Copenhagen Legal Building, Development, Danish Architecture
Frederiksberg Courthouse, Copenhagen
Danish Government Building Development – design by 3XN, Denmark
page updated 2 Sep 2016
RIBA Awards 2013 : RIBA National Award Winner – 13 Jun 2013
18 Apr 2013
Location: Frederiksberg, Copenhagen, Denmark
New Courthouse in Copenhagen
In accordance with the Danish design tradition, Frederiksberg Courthouse is the result of a rigorous and pragmatic process, where the challenges of the programme and the site were the creative point of departure. The successful result is an elegantly curved building, classical yet modern.
The design strategy takes its signal from the neighboring neo-classical courthouse designed by Hack Kampmann. To ensure a respectful dialogue with Kampmann’s building only parts of the building plot of the 5,000 m2 site was exploited and the new courthouse is kept lower against Kampmann’s building towards east while rising against the taller buildings towards south.
This resulted in a compact structure of 5,500 m2 designed at a respectful angle of 45 degrees to the listed courthouse and with an open corridor between the buildings, which are connected by a glass footbridge.
A row of old trees was preserved by letting the western facade curve elegantly. The brick and tile facade express solidity and creates a relationship with the existing cityscape. The elevation of the facade by the main entrance combined with the light tones of the facade adds lightness and gives the courthouse identity.
The interior is designed in coherence with the values of a modern democracy. It is a key parameter that all user groups, from staff to defendants, experience a logic and friendly environment with optimally separated flows. An atrium with skylight cuts through the middle of the building; drawing daylight deep into the interior and creating visual connections between decks. Shifting light art promotes a play of light and a pleasant atmosphere.
The sustainability strategy is ambitious. The building’s compact form, the immense use of daylight together with natural ventilation and the thermo active surfaces with night cooling result in significant energy savings. Moreover, the building has a green roof.
26 Nov 2009
3XN wins architectural competition for Frederiksberg Courthouse
The expansion of the Courthouse in Frederiksberg, Denmark, will be a sculptural and classic structure, which at once expresses a welcoming transparency while maintaining the justice system’s sobriety and seriousness.
The new Courthouse will be a natural extension of the existing neo-classical building, yet still maintaining its own identity through a modern and contemporary expression. The building design is therefore composed with clear references to the architectural style of the refined neighborhood of Frederiksberg. The form of the structure is both classic and dynamic – standing as a modern interpretation of the classical saddle style roof.
The interior of the courthouse focuses on compliance with the law reform’s requirements on security and internal segregations in the building. Therefore, the building provides its employees, the defendants, witnesses and guests an open and friendly environment in which it is easy for the different user groups to navigate. A small atrium cuts through the middle of the building; drawing light deep into the interior creating an open and airy connection across departments. This creates the feeling of direct daylight in the rooms and gives a general lightness to the building’s inner core, meeting the visitors as they come up from the foyer.
The Courthouse is expected for completion during the first half of 2012.
The winning team is: 3XN, Lemming & Eriksson og Schønherr Landskab. The other teams were: Arkitektfirmaet Kjær & Richter, Arkitema, Dissing & Weitling and Henning Larsen.
Frederiksberg Courthouse images / information from 3XN
Frederiksberg Courthouse Copenhagen design : 3XN Architects
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Frederiksberg Courthouse Building