Posts Tagged ‘harbour’
January 13th, 2011 | Richard Almond
The fisherman’s workshops on Grandagarður, Reykjavik harbour fuse simple functionality with an eccentric character. Designed in 1945 for the Port of Reykjavik by Eiríkur Einarsson, the row of 43 units are all built to the same basic design. The homogeneity is broken with subtle variations in the colour of the blue and green doors, while the walls themselves are white-washed for a distinctly maritime character. These sloping front and real walls offer interesting contrast to the general grain of the city, and the roofs are shaped to capture daylight.
December 4th, 2010 | Richard Almond
Iceland is a maritime nation. Founded by Vikings in the 9thCentury, it has an explicit affiliation with the sea. Reykjavik grew out of the sea. It had to, the sea was its lifeblood, its food supply and its connection to the old world. Reykjavik’s main streets ran efficiently into the water, terminating in long piers. The sea was Reykjavik’s heart, the piers pumped life into the city like arteries. Below shows the how Reykjavik developed between 1800 and 1900.
Over the years this connection has gradually diminished. The industrialisation of fishing and the advent of air travel has, amongst others, lead to Reykjavik’s lessened dependencyon the sea, and therefore a lessened use of its harbour. Reykjavik’s planning department is well aware of the potential problems associated with the slow death of the harbour, and is striving to revive the area through Graeme Massie’s masterplan. My concern, however, is that the redevelopment through key cultural institutions such as the new Harpa concert hall is redevelopment of solely the fringe of the harbour, the threshold between the city and the sea. My aspiration is to propose a redevelopment of the water itself, and so reconnect Reykjavik to the sea, once again, through its harbour.
My intention is for the harbour itself to benefit from a resurgence in bustling activity, yet primarily through leisure based activity such as sailing, in keeping with the masterplan aim.