Designs unveiled for new aquarium in Oslo

Plans for a brand new waterside aquarium near the Norwegian capital have been unveiled, showing a pair of smooth, undulating domes jutting out into the fjord.

Designed by London and Oslo-based practice Haptic Architects, the 10,000sq m (108,000sq ft) aquarium is encircled by walkways, providing a glimpse through the windows to the attraction’s interior. The building features a curved roof that will double as accessible public space.

The aquarium will be built on land which was formerly Oslo’s main airport at Fornebu in Bærum. Norwegian developer Selvaag also has plans to develop the wider area around the attraction.

“In addition to healthy political ideas and ideals, the sea has laid the basis for Norway’s fantastic prosperity today and has shaped us as Norwegians,” said developer Olav Selvaag in a press statement from the company.

“We wouldn’t have existed without the sea. But nevertheless we have lacked a national aquarium, and it’s high time that we acquired one. We now have a historic opportunity. Our intention is to create a fantastic aquarium which will become one of Norway’s leading and most beautiful attractions and a powerhouse for research and knowledge building. This will be the country’s national aquarium.”

The project has been conceived on a similar scale to Den Bla Planet in Copenhagen, Denmark, which was designed by 3XN and cost around US$100m (€85m, £76m).

Opening by 2023, the 7 million litre aquarium is expected to welcome hundreds of thousands of visitors each year.

The building will be "an architectonic jewel, and will be constructed with a quality which enhances Bærum and Norway as a tourist destination," Selvaag said.

Lisbeth Hammer Krog, chair of Bærum council, lent her support to the plans.

"The location is right for a facility of this kind, which fits well with our plans for ‘fantastic Fornebu’. Its position is ideal, close to forthcoming metro station and right next to the fast ferry quay," she said.

aquarium  Oslo  Norway  Selvaag  Haptic Architects  Olav Selvaag 
Plans for a brand new waterside aquarium near the Norwegian capital have been unveiled, showing a pair of smooth, undulating domes jutting out into the fjord. Designed by London and Oslo-based practice Haptic Architects, the 10,000sq m (108,000sq ft) aquarium is encircled by walkways, providing a glimpse through the windows to the attraction’s interior. The building features a curved roof that will double as accessible public space. The aquarium will
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Selvaag is developing the aquarium at the site of Oslo's former international airport / Selvaag
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