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COWI wins the competition for the tallest building in the Nordic countries

Photo: SOM

COWI has won the architectural competition for the Swedish skyscraber with its proposal “The Polestar Tower” in collaboration with Skidmore, Owings and Merrill and Entasis.

​In an international competition with five finalists, the team won thanks to its design and functionality, which include a 230-metre high tower and a landscaped ring for the area of Karlavagnsplatsen. The architectural competition, which gives Gothenburg its first real skyscraper, was commissioned by SERNEKE in consultation with the Gothenburg city planning office and Älvstranden Utveckling AB.

“We are very excited to have won this prestigious competition and will be pleased to deliver a great design and city district for the people of Gothenburg,” says Kent Jackson, Design Director at SOM.

Thanks to its international expertise in high-rises, consulting engineer COWI acted as consultant during preparation of the entry. With its competencies in foundation engineering, building construction, installations, traffic planning and fire safety, COWI contributed to finding the optimum, functional solution for the building and the area.

“We are very proud to be part of the winning team, which will give Gothenburg a new landmark. Now, we’re excited to kick off the design process,” says Magnus Nilber, which was responsible for coordinating COWI’s technical input to the winning entry.

“Beating excellent international competitors demonstrates that by uniting our competencies, we have the skills needed to design the tallest building in the Nordic countries,” says Håkan Adelwald, Senior Vice President of COWI in Sweden.

Sustainable vision for Karlavagnsplatsen

The Polestar creates opportunities for community within the building, incorporating a shared residents’ lounge, a public restaurant, a gym and a roof deck at podium level. The tower will offer a number of apartment types, all of which will be fitted with balconies. The building is topped with an observation deck which, as the highest point in Gothenburg will provide the public with an opportunity to share views to the city and the wider region.

Drawing on its experience as designers of 6 of the world’s 15 tallest buildings, SOM’s design is highly efficient, both in terms of floor space and energy use, while still including apartments with views focused on the city and waterfront. The tower design is complemented by a sustainable vision for the entire area, strengthening Gothenburg as a whole – in particular the post-industrial business district Lindholmen north of Göta Älv.

Extending from this bold vision, the master plan creates a highly animated 143,000-square metre mixed-use district. Offering a vibrant destination with a range of retail, food and beverage opportunities, this new neighbourhood will act as a catalyst in making Lindholmen the premier north bank area.

In parallel to the competition, to celebrate the city’s four hundredth anniversary, the design team has proposed a new landscaped ring linking key sites in Gothenburg and the formation of a new park through the realignment of Lindholmsallén.

The skyscraper is scheduled for completion by 2019.

LAST UPDATED: 16.09.2016