Three Pump Stations - Jutland - Denmark
Johansen Skovsted Arkitekter has converted three 50-year-old concrete and brick pump stations along Denmark‘s Skjern River into events spaces with elevated viewpoints. The Danish studio carried out the conversion and restoration of the pump stations as part of a wider land reclamation project along Denmark‘s largest river.
A section of the river was rerouted during the project, creating new areas of natural interest that attract visitors. The pump stations were built to keep the river flowing and keep the surrounding land well-drained. Their facades are reminiscent of the furrowed fields that surround the stations and the profiles of artificially-created soil banks that control the river. The studio says that what they wanted to achieve was to implement the conversion so that people could still see each of the pump stations with new and old parts as a united whole. They also added that they wanted to challenge the pump stations‘ massive and heavy character and strengthen their figure in the landscape, trying to add a human scale and materiality.
Inside, the original pumps have been relocated from the ground floor hall to underground water chambers, freeing up this area for exhibition and event spaces.
Wooden roof extensions with vertical cladding that mirrors the dimensions and pattern of the concrete facades provide protected vantage points and picnicking areas on the roof tops.
The treated spruce and plywood elements added to the exterior of the buildings will patina over time, helping the new structures match the „roughness“ of the detailing on the original pump stations creating a direct link between the old structure and the new, while adding a new material and another texture that is pleasing to the touch.
With this detail, the cladding and the main structure become one, reducing the complexity of the building. By building on this motif the anchoring of the buildings into the surroundings and the history of the site is strengthened.
[project selected by Chiara Malerba]