MVRDV to transform Gothenburg riverside warehouse into vibrant cultural hub

The atmosphere in the existing warehouse is really amazing, so why design something totally new when we could just do it again?
– Jacob van Rijs, MVRDV co-founder

A Gothenburg warehouse will be transformed into a 16,500sq m (177,600sq ft) mixed-use hub, with Dutch architects MVRDV on design duties.

Working in collaboration with BSK Arkitekter, the practice will convert the multi-storey industrial structure into Magasin 113 – “a lively cultural development with both private and public functions.”

The project is located in the heart of Frihamnen RiverCity – the largest urban development project in Sweden, and indeed Scandinavia – and has been conceived to create a more inclusive and vibrant area of the city.

The building will house an art centre, pop-up spaces, a café, tourist information, shops, a restaurant and studios. Gothenburg-based advertising agency Forsman & Bodenfors and Göteborgs Konsthall are among the creative firms who plan to establish their offices there.

The current brick façade and interiors of the warehouse will be restored and repaired, with the existing concrete frame supporting three new levels of timber-framed floors above, which will allow the experience of different atmospheres across storeys from ground level upwards.

“The atmosphere in the existing warehouse is really amazing, so why design something totally new when we could just do it again?” said Jacob van Rijs, MVRDV co-founder. “Therefore we chose to go for copy and paste, and ‘simply’ add a wooden copy of the warehouse on top of the existing concrete one.”

To combine the need for insulation and the desire to maintain the existing brick façade, a transparent glass protective ‘raincoat’ will be wrapped around the existing warehouse and the new extension on top.

In a design statement, MVRDV said the effect will “add an exciting blend of a building that is old and new, raw and smooth, and solid and transparent at the same time.”

Inside, different types of stairs will weave up the building to create a unified public route through space, leading to an accessible square between the old and new levels. Externally, new stairs will be placed along the main façade on the waterfront side, inviting those congregated in the main public plaza in front of the building to enter.

Magasin 113 will be closely located to other public spaces in the area, including a nearby park and pool.

Gothenburg City Council and project management firm Älvstranden Utveckling are overseeing the project, and were responsible for selecting MVRDV and BSK Arkitekter.

The news of the appointment follows hot on the heels of another MVRDV mixed-use commission – a 75,000sq m (807,300sq ft) green-terraced building in Amsterdam with a man-made public ‘valley’ carved into it.

MVRDV  Gothenburg  architecture  design  Sweden  Jacob van Rijs  BSK Arkitekte 
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MVRDV to transform Gothenburg riverside warehouse into vibrant cultural hub
A Gothenburg warehouse will be transformed into a 16,500sq m (177,600sq ft) mixed-use hub, with Dutch architects MVRDV on design duties.