Scan Magazine | Special Theme | Nordic Architecture and Design – Denmark
Re-shaping a more sustainable society A well-established company rooted in the traditions of Nordic architecture, Alex Poulsen Arkitekter strive to engage creatively and consciously with the world around them. Through inventive, socially viable and authentic projects, they aim to participate with and give back to society. By Trine Jensen-Martin | Photos: Alex Poulsen Arkitekter
“We believe that our projects have to be of value to the community,” explains managing director and partner Jonas Hviid Mønster. Alex Poulsen Arkitekter (APA) do not claim to be unique, nor do they compare themselves with others or point fingers at people who do not follow their ethos. APA do what they love and do it their way. And they evidently enjoy the creative process and overcoming challenges throughout. Recently, two diverse projects did just this, while fit106 | Issue 136 | November 2021
ting under what Hviid Mønster calls “the umbrella of society”. Jyderup prison – Denmark’s first all-female prison A current APA project is the redevelopment of Denmark’s first all-female prison in more than 20 years, when the last prison for women in Amstrup closed its doors. Jyderup prison reopened on 11 October this year, now only housing female inmates.
APA has a long history of rebuilding social spaces, aiming to engage with societal needs without compromising on quality, comfort or functionality. The work on Jyderup is a prime example and encompasses many principal values of the company. The focus has been to create a space where all inmates feel safe, and where their everyday lives are markedly improved. The importance of a sheltered space for female inmates is vital, and APA has been working closely with Kriminalforsorgen, the body in charge of the Danish penal system, to ensure that Jyderup is secure and practical, while being “welcoming and less institutionalised”, as Hviid Mønster puts it. Many of the women have children,