The Bridge House owes its name to the bridges that run across the building's seventh floor.
"The foundation stone for this social housing complex, called Brohuset ("The Bridge House") and built on this site acquired by the Ørestad Development Corporation, was laid on Wednesday 22 March 2006 in the thirty-fourth year of the reign of Queen Margrethe II, when Anders Fogh Rasmussen was Prime Minister, Ritt Bjerregaard was mayor of Copenhagen and Klaus Bondam was mayor in charge of the Technical and Environmental Administration...".
This is an excerpt from the document that was laid, together with a copy of the day's newspaper and a coin, in a wall next to the foundation stone for the Bridge House in Ørestad City when the first sod was turned for the new building. If the building one day collapses archaeologists of the future will be able to read that this was the site of a building complex comprising 123 housing units, 34 of wihch were part of two co-housing associations for senior citizens, and that a 90 sq.m. unit cost DKK 7,800 plus electricity, water, and heating.
The Bridge House owes its name to the bridges that span the entrances to the courtyard area at the building's seventh storey.
But the complex might just as well have been called the S Building, as the bridges are the result of the overall design of the building as seven stacked S-shaped layers. The S on the second level and the S on the seventh level are laid in the opposite direction of the other layers, thus creating a plateau with roof gardens above the first storey and the characteristic bridges on the seventh. As a whole, the building features protruding elements, providing nooks, outdoor areas, and panoramic views of the city and the building itself.
From open field to a diversity of outdoor spaces
"The special challenge in Øresund City is that you are literally starting in an open field," said one of the architects in the description of their proposal for the Bridge House. There was no existing identity to match and no special atmosphere to borrow from. But there was the horizon. The horizon is one of the reasons why the building is 'punctured' by large gateways that provide views of the island of Amager and the rest of Copenhagen from the south-west. Outdoor areas are very important in this building scheme, which borders a new public park. The courtyard is a semi-public area built slightly above the grade. Roof gardens are semi-private communal areas for residents, whose also enjoy private outdoor areas in the balconies of their housing units.
Senior citizens share staircases
The original intention was for the senior citizen units in the Bridge House to be located on the ground and top floors so that senior residents would be integrated with other resident groups and would share communal areas with them. But the two housing associations involved, FB and SAB, have decided to designate units in two stairwells as co-housing units for senior citizens. Separate communal areas for these units will be established if there is sufficient interest among people aged 55+. At the first information meeting about the plans, there was a great deal of interest in the project, which comprises units of two, three or four rooms, with floor areas of 80-109 sq. m.
Last updated Tuesday, January 21, 2014