MARELD Landscape Architects is a practice based in Gothenburg, Sweden. Our field of work is landscape architecture in all scales, from planning and urban design to detailing, implementation and aftercare.
Over the years MARELD has won several domestic and international competitions and has grown to a team of over 20 landscape architects, engineers and urbanists.
At MARELD we pride ourselves on our approach to our project works and are always striving for new ways in which we can engage clients, consults and end users in the design and delivery of public spaces. As a practice we are constantly developing our communication techniques through dialogue, open discussions, seminars and workshops. We also like to test our ideas at 1:1 scale and we are not afraid of working with temporary works if they help us gain a better understanding of the project and the projects users.
We approach all project works with “Heart and Courage”. We pride ourselves on this.
We work with passion (otherwise why do we do what we do…). We believe in difference and care in sustainability and holistic solutions. We believe in collaboration, in listening and learning from others each day. Playfulness, curiosity and engagement continue to push us further, to test new boundaries.
As landscape architects we firmly believe that we can positively contribute to the world that we live in. We benefit from experiences and proven knowledge but at the same time, we have the courage to break with old thoughts and outlooks. We have the courage to clearly state and defend our values.
A broad team of employees with different backgrounds, interests and competences creates the steam in MARELD’s engine. Such variation brings new know-how and understanding to the office, which ensures innovative, high quality and open-minded approach to our work. It is our firm belief that teamwork delivers the results that matter. As an organization MARELD is open and flexible, enabling every employee to contribute to the success of the practice.
In 2016 the team of MARELD + atelier le balto won the international competition to design the Jubilee Park in the heart of Gothenburg. This is one of Gothenburg biggest ever park projects celebrating the city’s 400th anniversary. Our vision for the Jubilee Park is providing an escape from the dense city center. The park will create a refuge for people, flora and fauna alike. It will transform for industrial harbour area to a much-needed green heart for the city center, but also a vital steppingstone in a larger green-blue network.
MARELD + atelier le balto has been commissioned to design and develop parts of the park over a five-year period. It is a process that runs on two parallel tracks – before the permanent park is completed a series of temporary parks are set up during several public workshops. This approach invites people to leave their imprint on the park both directly through building and planting, but even more importantly indirectly by voicing their interests and desires so that then can be incorporated into the final design of the permanent park. Workshop topics have ranged from seating preferences for elderly to urban sports and skateboarding. For us, the designers, such an approach offers a regular presence in the project area during different seasons, weather (it rains a lot in Gothenburg) and even different times of the day. Furthermore, the temporary parks enable us to experiment with new materials, methods and plants, and to learn more about the existing soil, water level, wind, shore, flora and fauna to name just a few of growing interests.
MARELD and Kjellgren Kaminsky won the international competition regarding the regeneration of the harbour area in Hafnarfjörður, just outside Reykjavik.
On the borderline between the harbour area existing activities such as the fishing industry, the entry of cruise ships and other businesses has been identified as an area where new synergies can emerge.
MARELD, together with an international team of architect and project leaders, developed proposals for a new series of public spaces and activities which function as development catalysts for the whole area. The challenges lie in creating new synergies in harmony and in context with the existing harbour and the prevailing townscape. We want to accomplish this by creating a structure which combines activities, typologies and social nodes. New safe and attractive paths in human scale provide visitors and tourists access to the more industrial parts of the harbour, which today are hard to reach. The interconnected paths invite the visitors to a string of memorable spaces, experiences and environments.
The scheme includes new housing and businesses, a harbour square, an old ship wharf, a marina and a Spa-Tower. The Tower is a social node and a landmark in the middle of the harbour.
Master planning proposals for Hafnarfjörður have been carried out in close collaboration with Kjellgren Kaminsky Architecture & Jvantspijker Rotterdam.
Through our various project works we recognized the need for a more coordinated approach to the way that spontaneous forms of urban recreation for are provided for in public spaces.
The question has become somewhat rhetorical, so we decided to research it further with skateboarding as our area of expertise in focus.
We invited guest speakers to a seminar titled Skateboarding and the City, an open discussion about skateboarding and its relation to the city.
We also invited various experts working with skateboarding across Scandinavian and those from the public and private sectors tasked with the delivery of public spaces to help us explore how skateboarding, landscape architecture and a creative approach to urban planning can help cities activate their forgotten or rather unused spaces.
Skateboarding and the City – Seminar
Who is the city there for? – Debate article
Råda torg (i.e. square) marks the center of Mölnlycke, a small town on the outskirts of Gothenburg.
The project was divided into two stages. The first task was to renovate the public square. The area outside the Town Hall was designed as an open and inviting urban space. Peripheral spaces between new office and apartment blocks provide a wonderful backdrop to the square with more intimate, calmer and greener experiences.
The long zig-zag benches, designed by MARELD, provide a human scale on the transition between square and surroundings. The playful shape of the benches welcomes different users and uses.
The square’s surface water has been led to rain gardens and the vegetation is chosen to suit the changing levels of soil moisture.
The second stage of the project focused on the connection between the square and an existing Public School. The goal was to continue the soft and flexible park-like landscape all the way to the school entrance. New vegetation follows the same principle of creating a soft, lush buffer towards the offices and apartments, with the exception that the choice of species changes gradually from ornamental plants on the square to mainly edible ones near the school.
In Trondheim, the iconic “Bryggerekken” can be seen in most of the tourist photos. Remnants from the Medieval age can be found in the townscape where many historical elements reflect the town’s history. Today Kjöpmannsgata is a 700 m long street with not a single bench! As part of the international competition to revitalize this street MARELD proposed the following question. Is it possible to transform an effective transportation route into a street which invites you to spend time and experience the historical surrounding (and at the same time keep all the trees, of course)?
Our competition winning answer was a beautifully designed wooden promenade! The promenade is sympathetic to existing site constraints. The large existing Ash, Elm and Maple trees have been preserved with minimal disturbance. The street is suddenly accessible for all. It’s safe and full of new experiences!
It is a proposal which takes a holistic approach and invites the surrounding buildings and trees into a coherent streetscape.
The project winning proposal is the result of a close collaboration with Kjellgren Kaminsky Architecture.
In 2016 the practice celebrated its 10-year anniversary! We decided to take a moment or two to reflect on what we have achieved, where we are today, where we have been and where we are heading.
To do so, we packed our picnic baskets and headed back to the roots. Hunnebostrand – a small fishing town on the west coast of Sweden.
We began with an internal workshop where we discussed MARELDs identity and how we wish to engage ourselves as a practice. It seemed quite natural to celebrate the first 10 years with an anniversary book. A book that reflects on who we are and what we believe in as modern-day Landscape Architects. We want the book to be seen (and read!) as a friendly summary to our business partners, colleagues, clients and friends.
The content of the book is framed by the x-factor, where the x can be the unknown, a place on map, the hidden treasure or 10 years of work. Enjoy!
The city of Trelleborg lies between the Baltic Sea and the extensive Scanian agricultural landscape. Therefore, even a small water body such as Ståstorpsån is of high local importance for both biodiversity and recreation. Today the river mouth is surrounded by warehouses, gas stations and parking lots that serve the nearby harbour. The task was to remodel the mouth of Ståstorpsån to meet the ecological and social needs of the city.
In collaboration with an ecologist we proposed the reconstruction of the outlet from a narrow and steep channel to a more generous and broader river where the flowing water could find its own way out to sea. We literally plan to resurrect the floodplain and recreate habitats for wildlife and at the same time provide inspiring play landscape and shelter from strong sea winds for children and parents alike. The new “wildscape” could attract vulnerable coastal birds such as the little tern back to the site.
One of the bigger challenges in this project is constructing a park where natural processes continuously remodel the site. This requires a mindset that allows experimentation in maintenance, understanding from the public, choice of vegetation, materials and methods that permit occasional disturbance or sometimes even destruction by natural forces.