Grindaker is an award-winning landscape architecture practice in Oslo. Established in 1953 by Morten R. Grindaker, the firm as we know it today was founded in 1986 and currently has about 40 employees. We are one of Norway’s largest landscape architecture firms. As of 2019, eleven equal partners, all with considerable experience, own Grindaker AS. Per Heikki Granroth is the current Managing Director.
The office is diverse and versatile in relation to its design approach and project focus. Projects range in scale from pocket to large urban parks and sustainable regional transportation. These include streetscapes, waterfronts, sports arenas, schools, graveyards, playgrounds and commercial industrial landscapes. We handle landscape architectural tasks in all phases from predesign to construction management, as well as various assessment tasks including zoning and site plans.
Grindaker’s projects have received some of the highest honors in Norway for design and innovation, such as the DOGA-merket Prize 2017 for Smestad Recycling Station, the Landscape Architecture Prize in 2016 for Klosterenga Ecological Housing, Houens Fonds Diplom 2015 and the Forsvarsbyggs Arkitekturpris 2013 for the military sports facility at Haakonsvern Naval Base, Hedrende Omtale i Statens Byggeskikkspris 2014 for Nord Østerdal High School, and the Førde Kommunes Byggeskikkspris 2013 for Blomreina cemetery.
International study tours are arranged annually to enhance inspiration and individual growth, and employees are encouraged to participate in continuing education courses. Grindaker is a member of the Norwegian Green Building Council (NGBC), and a proud collaborative partner in the International Federation of Landscape Architects (IFLA) World Congress, which takes place in Oslo 2019.
Grindaker AS is innovative with a strong technical foundation. Our mission is to create landscapes that inspire and contribute to positive community development. At Grindaker, the starting point for all projects, large or small, is always the character of a site and its possibilities, with community engagement and respect for nature and the environment as central figures in each design. We have created original sustainable landscapes that have become an integral part of Nordic daily life, with excellent technical, conceptual and ecological competence, playfulness, enthusiasm and creativity. The firm has produced a wide range of projects including housing, public infrastructure, sports facilities, courtyards, parks, urban spaces, cemeteries, schools and playgrounds. We collaborate with experts from various disciplines to create sustainable urban and rural landscapes that are site specific, create a comfortable atmosphere and are interesting to use.
The park is an active meeting place with sculptural landforms and a central playground that heightens all the senses. The cohesive activity and play areas are designed to preserve existing trees, anchor lines of movement, and act as a link for walkways and an overall green structure. Activities for high and low intensity in four main areas with varied challenges are limited only by the imagination. The circus ring and jungle gym; solar system, planet and moonscape garden; music area; berry garden and meadow mountain; terrain forms for climbing; and ball field create different experiences for children of all ages. Grindaker has been involved in the project from the idea phase to the finished landscape.
Grindaker | Location: Drammen, Norway | Design year: 2008 | Year Built: 2012| All Photos: Damian Heinisch
Steinsdalsfossen is a popular attraction in Kvam. The site is one of the Norwegian Public Roads Administration’s Scenic Route projects. From a parking area on the south side of Steinsdal’s River is a fantastic view up towards the falls. A new tourist information building in green concrete points visitors toward the falls and frames the attraction from inside the building. A central island in the parking lot acts as a rest area. From here a concrete trail leads the visitors up to the falls. From the parking lot there is also an easily accessed fishing trail with a seating wall. Cherry birch trees are planted throughout the rest area. The beautiful trunks accentuate the green concrete that will eventually turn a fine copper patina. In the outer zones the vegetation is more integrated with the existing species found in the area. An important concept was to protect the beautiful cultural landscape around the falls in the best possible way. Grindaker participated in the project from the feasibility study to the built landscape.
Grindaker | Other designers involved: Jarmund/ Vigsnæs arkitekter AS | Norway National Route Stop | Norheimsund, Norway | Design year: 2009 | Year Built: 2014 | All Photos: Damian Heinisch
In winter 2005, Grindaker collaborated with ØKAW architects and Multiconsult on a feasibility study for a new ski jump for Holmenkollen. The project had a large scope; from analysis, research and regulation, to detailed design and construction supervision. This work was extended to include a study for a complete ski arena adapted to today’s requirements. The result was a concept for a combined arena in Holmenkollen with a stadium for cross-country, ski shooting, and a two ski jumps in Midtstuen. After winning the Nordic World Ski Championships in 2011, the county of Oslo had an open competition for a new ski jump at Holmenkollbakken. JDS Architects won the competition. The project was developed by two teams with ØKAW Architects, Grindaker, and Multiconsult responsible for the master plan as well as the New Midtstubakken, the cross-country arena and trails. In addition; JDS, Norconsult and Grindaker were responsible for the New Holmenkollbakken. The project also included three newly established ponds, a new Besserud tier, Seterdammen and Midtstudammen. The latter was given a natural habitat from the streams of Styggedalen and artificially from a drilled mountain line. This dam also offers hikers a beautiful swimming area in the summer.
Grindaker | Other designers involved: JDS Architects, ØKAW Architects | Project location: Oslo, Norway| Design year: 2005 | Year Built: 2012 | All Photos: Damian Heinisch
Hydroparken is a project developed in the beginning of the 1960’s. The firm’s name at the time was Grindaker and Gabrielsen. The project was developed in collaboration with the architect Viksjø and painter/printmaker Odd Tanberg. Viksjø had won a competition for a new administration building for Norsk Hydro, and contacted Morten Grindaker in reference to the park. Hydroparken was distinct in Norwegian landscape architecture, with its strong connection to architecture and abstract art. It was common in the 1960’s to draw a romantic park with lush flower beds. Instead, Grindaker and Gabrielsen used the building’s lines and axes to create a modern design. Of the elements introduced, the two freestanding walls with rock mosaics were the signature for this design. These large stones were cast in concrete blocks, which were then cut into smaller shapes. The park was awarded Green Park of the Year in 1994.
Grindaker | Other designers involved: Architects Erling Viksjø, Artist Odd Tanberg | Project location: Oslo, Norway | Design year: 1960 | Year Built: 1963 | All Photos: Damian Heinisch
This industrial area adjacent to Spjelkavik church was redesigned as a new cremation cemetery that encourages visitors to wander and linger. Grindaker subsequently implemented regulatory planning, detail planning, and construction project management. The graveyard provides space for 500 urns in addition to a memorial. The plan proposal creates a sheltered green oasis connected to the church. The terrain is raised in the outer zones of the field to create a screen, visually submerging it in a valley in relation to the surrounding area. To the south and west lies a new grove of birch trees. The vegetation is planned for seasonal interest; with bulbs that bloom in early spring, forest wildflowers in the summer, as well as vegetation with autumn color. The plan provides ample seating and a reflective pool as a focal point, with the concept is that this site should provide visitors with a place for calm contemplation. The bricks in the curving path visually connect the paving with the church facade.
Grindaker | Project location: Ålesund, Norway | Design year: 2010 | Year Built: 2017 | All Photos: Damian Heinisch
Published on February 26, 2019