CopenHill, Copenhagen, Denmark, BIG - Bjarke Ingels Group
Project year : 2019
Architect(s) :
Address : Vindmøllevej 6, COPENHAGEN, Denmark
Latitude/Longitude : 55.684649467387835,12.620029398738401

Photographs : | | |

Area : 4100 m²
Project Team :
 Alberto Cumerlato, Aleksander Wadas, Alexander Codda, Alexander Ejsing, Alexandra Gustafsson, Alina Tamosiunaite, Armor Gutierrez, Anders Hjortnæs, Andreas Klok Pedersen, Annette Jensen, Ariel Wallner, Ask Andersen, Balaj IIulian, Blake Smith, Borko Nikolic, Brygida Zawadzka, Buster Christensen, Chris Falla, Chris Zhongtian Yuan, Daniel Selensky, Dennis Rasmussen, Espen Vik, Finn Nørkjær, Franck Fdida, Gonzalo Castro, Gül Ertekin, George Abraham, Helen Chen, Henrick Poulsen, Henrik Rømer Kania, Horia Spirescu, Jakob Ohm Laursen, Jelena Vucic, Jeppe Ecklon, Ji-young Yoon, Jing Xu, Joanna Jakubowska, Johanna Nenander, Kamilla Heskje, Katarzyna Siedlecka, Krzysztof Marciszewski, Laura Wätte, Liang Wang, Lise Jessen, Long Zuo, Maciej Zawadzki, Mads Enggaard Stidsen, Marcelina Kolasinska, Marcos Bano, Maren Allen, Mathias Bank, Matti Nørgaard, Michael Andersen, Narisara Ladawal Schröder, Niklas A. Rasch, Nynne Madsen, Øssur Nolsø, Pero Vukovic, Richard Howis, Ryohei Koike, Se Hyeon Kim, Simon Masson, Sunming Lee, Toni Mateu, Xing Xiong, Zoltan David Kalaszi, Tore Banke, Yehezkiel Wiliardy
Partners in Charge : Bjarke Ingels, David Zahle, Jakob Lange, Brian Yang
Project Leaders : Jesper Boye Andersen, Claus Hermansen, Nanna Gyldholm Møller

Text description provided by the architects. Located in an industrial area near Copenhagen city center, CopenHill, also known as Amager Bakke, is an exemplary model in the field of waste management and energy production, as well as an architectural landmark in the cityscape of Copenhagen. The building replaces the 50-year-old Amagerforbraending plant and is the single largest environmental initiative in Denmark.

The new breed of waste-to-energy plant is topped with a ski slope, hiking trail, climbing wall, an urban recreation center, and environmental education hub, turning the power plant into a destination. The building embodies BIG’s notion of hedonistic sustainability while contributing to Copenhagen’s goal of becoming one of the world’s first carbon-neutral cities.

Located on the industrial waterfront of Amager, where raw industrial facilities have become the site for extreme sports – from wakeboarding to go-kart racing – the new power plant adds skiing, hiking, and rock climbing to the area. Expert skiers can ski down the artificial Olympic half-pipe length ski slope all year round, test the freestyle park, or try the timed slalom course, while beginners and kids practice on the lower slopes. Skiers ascend the park from the platter lift, carpet lifts, or glass elevator with views inside the 24-hour waste incineration process.

CopenHill’s continuous façade features 1.2 m tall and 3.3 m-wide aluminum boxes stacked like gigantic bricks overlapping with each other. In between, glazed windows allow daylight to reach deep inside the facility, while larger openings on the southwest façade illuminate workstations on the administrative floors.

The public can enjoy the rooftop bar, cross-fit area, or the highest observation deck in the city before descending the 490 m tree-lined hiking and running trail within the lush, mountainous terrain. The 10,000 m² green roof, 85 m high up in the air, features a biodiverse landscape while absorbing heat, removing air particulates, and minimizing storm-water runoff.

Biologists have monitored the biodiversity of Copenhill since its inauguration in 2019. At the latest investigation in 2020, 119 different new plant and tree species were observed.

On the longest vertical façade, an 85 m climbing wall is installed making it the tallest artificial climbing wall in the world.

Beneath the slopes, whirring furnaces, steam, and turbines convert 440,000 tons of waste annually into enough clean energy to deliver electricity and district heating for 150,000 homes. The power plant’s infrastructure, from ventilation shafts to air-intakes, helps create the varied topography of a mountain; a man-made landscape created in the encounter between the needs from below and the desires from above.

Ten floors of administrative space are occupied by the Amager Resource Center team, including a 600 m² education center for academic tours, workshops and sustainability conferences.

At the bottom of the ski slope, an après-ski bar welcomes locals and visitors to wind down once the boots are off. Formerly a piece of infrastructure in an industrial zone, CopenHill is now a destination for all citizens and visitors of Copenhagen.

Contributed by BIG – Bjarke Ingels Group