Celebrating the laying of the cornerstone at DFDS’ new headquarters

Sustainability and social responsibility were at the centre when the cornerstone of the future HQ for DFDS was laid today. PLH Arkitekter designed the building that will be located on the docks of The Copenhagen Port called ’Nordhavn’, overlooking the entry and exit of The Copenhagen-Oslo Ferry. At the event, the mayor of Copenhagen, Frank Jensen, spoke, as well as the CEOs of the building owner PensionDanmark, the future tenant DFDS, the contractor NCC and PLH Arkitekter. A time capsule with objects from the year 2020, was placed inside the cornerstone.

Sustainability and social responsibility at the centre

The first speaker was The Lord Mayor of Copenhagen, Frank Jensen, who started by looking forward to the years to come where Copenhagen is facing a green and sustainable future. ”We have to pull together in order to take care of the climate challenges. In 2025 Copenhagen will be the first CO2-neutral capital in the world, and that is why I’m so excited that this building will be sustainable. I’m very happy that PensionDanmark is taking the lead in behaving in a socially responsible way,” the mayor said.

Next, The CEO of the building owner PensionDanmark, Torben Möger Pedersen, talked:
In PensionDanmark we are very proud to be able to contribute with a modern and sustainable super tanker-office-building for DFDS. It’s a major league construction, that will be classified after the certification DGNB Gold that vouches for that the property will live up to the highest standards of environmental, societal and financial sustainability.” Torben Möger thanked all involved parties for a an excellent collaboration – PLH Arkitekter also got praises: ”PLH Arkitekter has delivered a fantastic project. I’m looking very much forward to seeing the final building when it will be launched in the beginning of 2022,” he ended.

Torben Carlsen, CEO at DFDS – the future tenant – looked forward to the new workplace of the company:
It will be an embracing workplace. We have employees from 40 different countries, and we are looking forward to welcoming them in a brand new building, that will support the way we want to collaborate. It’s a cultural journey that will set the future course for DFDS and the way we collaborate and will develop as a company.” Torben Carlsen thanked all parties for their large support for the building: “We are so much looking forward to moving in,” he ended.

Søren Mølbak, CEO and partner of PLH Arkitekter talked about the inspiration for the architecture of the building:
”Architecturally, we have been inspired by the maritime world of DFDS. We have sought to create a technological, modern and forward-leaning building with a maritime architecture to match the visionary company that DFDS is.”

Martin Manthorpe, Director of Strategy, Business Development and Public Affairs at NCC, also had praising words about the architecture of the building:
”It will be a completely unique building. It is a construction that in a very beautiful and noble way connects the location by the water with the operations of DFDS,” he said. Martin Mantorpe thanked everyone for their efforts – especially the building owner, PensionDanmark, for pressuring suppliers and in that way help to promote the transition of the construction industry to a more sustainable future.

The Mayor of Copenhagen, Frank Jensen

Søren Mølbak, CEO and partner, PLH Arkitekter

Time capsule – setting the course for a more sustainable future
After the speeches the construction was celebrated with the bricking in of a time capsule containing objects from the year 2020 in the cornerstone. PLH Arkitekter placed the official UN pin, symbolizing the 17 universal goals for a sustainable development, in the time capsule. Søren Mølbak explained the choice with the fact that the climate in 2020 has entered the overall agenda, and that we in the construction industry are working seriously to address the humanmade changes to our climate and environment: ”We believe that posterity will understand our time as the era where we seriously set the course for a sustainable society”, he said. Also the paper of the day, coins, descriptions of DFDS as well as ‘the speech of the future’ was placed in the time capsule and bricked in to the cornerstone.

A beautiful and future proof office building
Architecturally, the building supports the identity and culture of DFDS – both regarding design and functions. The terminology of the maritime world of DFDS has been the inspiration for the architectural concept of the building, the location along the quay and the placing of the functions inside the building. The angles in the ground floor plan and facade create a wavy architectural expression adding movement to the building. An activity-based workplace design creates a flexible office environment with an open culture of interacting supporting and promoting the collaborating culture of DFDS. Large emphasis has also been placed in creating a light and airy environment that supports wellbeing.

Time capsule and cornerstone

PLH placed the UN pin with the 17 universal goals for a sustainable future in the time capsule


  • 12.500 m2 office space and appox. 1.000 m2 basement, as well as parking spaces for cars and bicycles
  • Space for 700 employees
  • The building is constructed by the contractor NCC and is expected to be certified DGNB Gold
  • The building will be completed in the beginning of 2022

Grundstenen nedsænkes og indstøbes i bygningen