The challenge was to build “urban qualities”, the atmosphere of a living city, into the place: to give it identity, intimacy, drama, monumentality, friendliness, contrasts, humour and the feeling of joy – to ensure the buildings talked with each other across the streets, narrow passages and public spaces.The contact surface with the waters of the fjord has been exploited and pulled deep inside the mass of buildings via narrow passages and streets that run down the quayside and provide energy and life to the pedestrian areas.
The four buildings are designed as city blocks and appear more like complex “building environments” than individual buildings. The “city blocks” provide a typical urban cross-section of functions: theatre and a basement cinema. Shops on street level and and offices on middle floors with apartments with lush roof gardens. The result is a neighbourhood where a kindergarden sits next to a night club, with activities for every age and every desire.The apartments are conceived as a complete residential complex covering the rooftops of the city, with sun and magnificent views, far from the noise of the busy streets below.