when designing these new apartment buildings in aarhus, denmark, CEBRA architecture began with one of the most important spaces for a community: the street. the project draws from the history of the neighborhood and samples distinctive architectural elements from the surrounding urban context. the result is a community of 146 residences that feels cozy, welcoming, and safe.  

image by kasper hornbæk

 

 

the new street, named ‘æbeløgade’, is located in the øgade quarter of aarhus. this neighborhood was first established around the year 1900 and it’s known for its cozy streets, varying residential architecture and intimate courtyards.

CEBRA designs a 'cozy cobbled streetscape' for aarhus apartments designboom

image by mikkel frost

 

 

CEBRA pays tribute to the history of this neighborhood by combining all the best architectural elements such as a cobbled streetscape with trees, sidewalks, and inviting front yards, and reinterpreting them in a contemporary way. the new street is designed as a community-focused shared space, where residents, children playing, passersby and road users contribute to creating a vivid quarter with room for common activities and play.

CEBRA designs a 'cozy cobbled streetscape' for aarhus apartments designboom

image by mikkel frost

 

 

the design emerges from what CEBRA describes as ‘architectural sampling’ of the surrounding urban context. the architect mixes, combines and reinterprets øgade’s distinctive architectural features such as perimeter block structures, brick façades, green courtyards and the cozy street. furthermore, æbeløgade’s architecture uses dramatic roof pitches, dormer windows, and large window sections to create jumps and surprising variations throughout the block.

CEBRA designs a 'cozy cobbled streetscape' for aarhus apartments designboom

image by mikkel frost

 

 

together, they form a varied yet distinguishable expression that reduces the building scale and contributes to a welcoming atmosphere. in addition, the traditional brick building is reinterpreted into monochrome houses in three colors: a warm red, a light grey, and a beautiful brown. a composition where all design elements, from the bricks, the joints, through to the mailbox and the downpipes follow the same color scheme underlining a modern housing typology – a street with its own personality.

CEBRA designs a 'cozy cobbled streetscape' for aarhus apartments designboom

image by mikkel frost

 

 

the street forms a vibrant artery through the new neighborhood that in combination with a crossing system of paths opens towards the city by creating visual and physical connections to the botanical garden it borders. the garden’s green and blue elements continue throughout æbeløen and ‘color’ both the buildings and the outdoor areas. a sustainable urban drainage system utilizes rainwater as a visible, recreational element that is combined with minimum upkeep areas, where vegetation can grow wild and new species appear naturally, thereby supporting a rich variety of flora and fauna.

CEBRA designs a 'cozy cobbled streetscape' for aarhus apartments designboom

image by mikkel frost

CEBRA designs a 'cozy cobbled streetscape' for aarhus apartments designboom

image by mikkel frost

CEBRA designs a 'cozy cobbled streetscape' for aarhus apartments designboom

image by mikkel frost

CEBRA designs a 'cozy cobbled streetscape' for aarhus apartments designboom

image by mikkel frost

CEBRA designs a 'cozy cobbled streetscape' for aarhus apartments designboom

image by mikkel frost

CEBRA designs a 'cozy cobbled streetscape' for aarhus apartments designboom

image by mikkel frost

CEBRA designs a 'cozy cobbled streetscape' for aarhus apartments designboom

image by kasper hornbæk

 

 

project info:

 

project name: æbeløen

location: aarhus, denmark

architect: CEBRA architecture

area: 127,014 ft2 (11,800 m2)

year: 2016 – 2020

status: completed, competition, 1st prize

landscape architect: MBYland

turnkey contractor: raundahl & moesby

engineer: oluf jørgensen

photography: kasper hornbæk, mikkel frost

 

designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.

 

edited by: lynne myers | designboom

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