Amager shopping center

Open and green architecture creates a new space for shopping and café life within Amager, close to Copenhagen

Categories

  • Urban
  • Retail

Location

Amager, Copenhagen

Year

2013-2020

Status

Done

Size

34.700m² (whereat 4.800m² is new) + 10.600m² indoor parking area

Client(s)

DSC – Danske Shoppingcentre / Danica

Parking spaces

340 spaces for car parking and 206 spaces for bicycle parking, of which 131 are under roof

The design of the new Amager Centre focuses on creating an open and modern mall while still respecting the history of the shopping mall and the building’s history as a factory.

The purpose of the modernisation has been to create a shopping centre inviting the local community to meet in more open, green and friendly spaces than before. Today, the mall among other things offers Denmark’s largest plant wall, a green vibrant courtyard, well lighted spaces as well as intimate and cozy areas with cafés and local meeting opportunities for the local citizens.

PLH Architects have been responsible for the remodeling of the historical shopping centre. The official re-opening was in September 2020.

From a closed, commercial shopping centre to an open urban space

One of the most important aspects of the modernisation of Amager Centret has been changing the identity from a closed, introvert shopping center into an open, friendly mall in harmony with the characteristics of the local area supporting and strengthening the area’s peculiarity and attractiveness. To accomplish this, the original architecture of the building has been highlighted and reinforced.

The effect architecture applied to the house in 2008 is peeled off and the façades of the building are painted white, and the full potential of the courtyard is achieved.

Contact
Søren Mølbak
+ 45 2720 0591
sm@plh.dk

An open and green courtyard
As part of the modernisation, Amager Centre’s courtyard has been given a more active role. It has been opened and given multiple access ways – both directly from the street and through the cafés on the ground level of the mall. The courtyard allows the cafés to offer outdoor serving, and the local citizens may enjoy food and drinks in the fresh air surrounded by the largest plant wall in Denmark. The courtyard has been designed with the aim of creating an intimate atmosphere though new extensions to the building. Moreover, the courtyard has been changed geometrically to be less rectangular and thus appears less planned and predicable. The new buildings are made with recycled bricks in order to preserve and reinforce the industrial architecture.

It is also worth mentioning, that the existing roof terrace has been enlarged and now extends along the entire building façade. Another roof terrace has been laid out at a new office lease in the southeast corner. It is expected that in 2021 a direct access to the roof terrace from the courtyard will be built.

A green mall

The new open design of the Amager Centre with the vibrant courtyard, incoming lights and roof terraces creates a bright environment as a framework for intimacy and “hygge”. On the outside of the building Denmark’s largest plant wall winds like a rope connecting the green characteristics of the Amager island with the building’s industrial past as a rope factory. The living plant wall also offers room for animal and plant life adding nature and increased biodiversity to the urban setting.

Modernizing in respect of the history

Historically, the building contained a rope factory, and all the modernized elements including the green plant wall, the facades and the interior of the building are rebuilt in respect of this history. Already in 1975 Amager Centre became a shopping mall, however, the building as a rope factory dates back to 1940. The white façade and the two towers of the building have been preserved from the time the building served as a factory. Also, within the indoor streets you can find manhole covers with ropes and dates from the beginning of the building. The plant wall itself well is designed to depict braided rope.

Enhanced flow and a new parking garage

An important part of the modernisation was to improve the infrastructure throughout Amager Centret. Shopping streets with dead ends are now open with double height spaces and circling pathways creating flow. The double height rooms connect the floors and create a sense of spaciousness, also with this architectural grip new interesting and eventful squares appear with shops on all sides.

In addition to the improved flow, Amager Centret has also achieved a larger area for shops. This area is retrieved by optimising the space from the old parking garage, which was demolished and completely rebuild – smaller, but taller and slimmer with the same amount of parking spaces.

"We have made an effort of creating a cozy courtyard with a central city atmosphere, in which the locals would want to meet – and in respect of the surrounding buildings. The facades are bright, open and tactile and by means of new adjacent buildings the courtyard becomes simpler and less rectangular. This creates an intimate space in which people wants to stay longer"

- Jesper Spager, Senior Project Leader, PLH Arkitekter