Scan Magazine, Issue 84, January 2016

Page 82

Scan Magazine | Attraction of the Month | Denmark

Attraction of the Month, Denmark

A new city district like no other Focused on art, culture and creativity, Musicon is not a traditional city development. Located in Roskilde, half an hour from Copenhagen, the new city district aims to be a national centre for everyone who needs untraditional settings to develop new projects and ideas.

oldest and biggest, transforms into Denmark’s fourth-largest city with residents from all over Europe.

By Signe Hansen | Photos: Kim Wendt

‘Life before the city’ and ‘user-driven city development’ have been central terms at Musicon since the old factory workshops, office buildings and empty spaces were taken into use in 2008. Hence, skaters, artists, a dance theatre, Roskilde Festival, organisations and small creative firms who were the first to move in, set the course for the future city development. Now, Musicon has entered a phase that sees the permanent city beginning to take form alongside the temporary projects that continue to flourish.

Ever since Roskilde city bought the old concrete factory, Unicon, in 2003, the ambition has been to explore alternative approaches to city planning. For this reason, a typical masterplan for the 250,000-square-metre plot was never developed. Instead, the idea was to develop the city step by step in constant dialogue with potential and current users and residents as well as the architects capable of realising its physical structure. “It has always been a major drive to create a city district without any superfluous structures – a place where we would not have to fill a lot of empty new houses with content, but where we would base the buildings on the ideas which they 82 | Issue 84 | January 2016

were to house and further,” says Katrine Nyland Sørensen, who is head of Musicon, adding: “Match-making is an important part of the administration’s work. We are constantly contacted by people with good ideas, but not everyone has the financial resources needed to realise their plans. Whether they want to build an office facility, open a shop or set up an art exhibition in one of our halls, we try to match them up with someone who has the experience and resources to help them along.” The dynamic approach to city planning draws inspiration from Musicon’s closest neighbour, Roskilde Festival. Every year, the festival, which is one of Europe’s

A multifunctional city

“My co-workers and I are in contact with big and small participants daily – from small companies that want to set up a store in a 20-foot container, or build everything from individual homes to major cultural institutions and property de-

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