Farsta strandbad is a popular public bathing site located south of Stockholm city. The recreational paths along the lakesides of lake Magelungen was previously inaccessible. As a part of Stockholm city’s work towards a more pedestrian-friendly city, Karavan got the assignment to design the solution to make the lakeside paths accessible for all to enjoy and explore their local environment.

The solution is a new wooden boardwalk added to the lakefront, inviting people to enjoy the beauty of lake Magelungen in all its changing seasons. It is accessible and serves as both a bathing jetty in the summer as well as a spot for skating in the winter. As a well-balanced addition to the site it refines the place and highlights the lakefront.

The boardwalk is part of a restoration of the entire lakefront and bathing area Farsta strandbad, designed by Karavan. It’s the first stage in the upgrade of a longer recreational path along the lake Magelungen, which is a part of Stockholm municipality’s work towards a greener and more pedestrian-friendly city.

The existing walk along Magelungen’s lakeside runs through some inaccessible hilly forest terrain, just before it reaches the bathing site. This meant the path was not adapted for everyone to use and the route was situated with a distance between the visitor and the water’s edge.

The boardwalk and the gangways landing positions aim to fit well into the existing landscape, to make a minimal footprint and preserve as much of the trees and reeds as possible. As the boardwalk is a floating construction, it creates a new habitat for aquatic animals with a calmer area on the inside, framed by the reeds, and access along the ground with protection of the floating construction.

The design of the boardwalk is sparse, but carefully designed as a whole, as well as in the details. The wooden construction is rigorously studied in detail and forms a geometric pattern, built with precision. The handrails are placed where needed, made from steel and shaped into a transparent framework. The generous areas for sunbathing and flexible zones for setting up wheelchairs are framed by a built-in sofa with back- and armrests. The back of the deck is shielded with a transparent horizontal wooden fence, as a reflection of the reeds. The boardwalk offers space for visitors to stroll along the water, linger and socialize. It provides a new point of destination available for use all year round – with opportunities for bathing on the hot summer days, to ice skating during rimy winter days when the lake is frozen.

The wooden parts are made of Kebony, a processed pinewood made in Norway, which is hard and stable similar to hard-wood. Steel in handrails is powder coated.

The boardwalk is a combination of a fixed structure attached to the land, connected by gangways to a floating construction. The floating decks must manage the load of many people at the same time, and the pressure from waves and ice in the winter. The construction of the floating decks is designed in collaboration with a company specialized in pontoon and harbor construction, to guarantee it will last over time and be as solid as needed.

The floating deck is a merge of fourteen floating elements of the most stable type, casted in concrete with an inner kernel of cellular plastics. It is anchored to the ground and can fluctuate with the water.

The height level of the boardwalk has been carefully adapted to the changing water levels during the seasons, giving the connecting gangways a maximum of a 5% gradient, in accordance with the Swedish accessibility guidelines.

The construction was finished in 2019, and Farsta lakefront boardwalk was one of four projects nominated for the Landscape Architecture Prize by Architects Sweden (former Siena prize) the same year.

Project Data

Landscape architecture: Karavan landskapsarkitekter

Other designers involved in the design:

Early stage program – landscape architect Emma Lundgorg (Tema Group), land construction – KFS, construction of floating deck – Svenska Pontonhamnar AB

Project location: Farsta strandbad, Stockholm, Sweden

Design year: 2018

Year Built: 2018-2019

Client: Stockholm municipality

Photos: Göran Ekeberg

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