LAND arkitektur: In Masmo you will find one of Stockholm´s most spectacular metro entrances. An elongated mountain with cliffs and pine trees stands as a backdrop to a square where the entrance to the station is shaped as a concrete cassette pushed into the mountain hillside. Even though the presence of the mountain is prominent and majestic, it is barely visible in the everyday rush to the metro. A raised garden bed that used to be the center of attention on the square, has been removed. Instead, a grand open space has been created on which a grid of red and orange poles has been placed. The vertical and contrasting qualities of the poles emphasize the mountain and at the same time prevent unwanted car traffic. A large crevice is used as motive, shaping a crack on the square filled with shattered glass and grass tufts. A large box covered in wood is in fact a protective caisson for district heating pipes. In the evenings, the mountain is illuminated. Since the entrance to the metro was inaugurated, the adjacent Solhagaparken has been built. A stairway leads from the square down to an activity park, which has been established in close dialogue with the municipality of Huddinge and an adjacent school. Several design elements are linked to the metro entrance making it part of one common project: The red poles and the prefabricated metal-cased concrete pipes which serve as seating, plantings and play functions.
Masmo- Solhaga is a project with a very small budget (Ca 1 million euro in total on 12 000 m2 park and square). It is an attempt to create an important public space with small means by using standard equipment in a different way. The project has become a new important destination in an area that has struggled with rather low economic and social conditions. The small budget has driven the project to use standard equipment differently and for new uses:
– The red poles are standard equipment used for orientation, here they hinder cars from driving up to the metro entrance, “downscaling” the large landscape.
– The large concrete cylinders are normally used as water cisterns underground. Here we have used them as playground equipment, planting cylinders to be used as a new type of seating and for lightning features.
– The edges in the park are normally tools for ground reinforcement. A very cheap way of defining edges between different surfaces.
– Granit slabs are reused from the previous design, cheap and recycled material are used as far as possible.
The features and the design have created a rich environment with a variety of functions out of a space that before was nondescript. Solhagaparken-Masmo has become a new destination even for people outside the community and has stimulated people from different parts of the city to meet. Safety used to be a big issue in the area, especially at night. Therefore, a lot of effort has been put into the lightning design. Outside the metro entrance the large cliff is illuminated in a rather spectacular way. The lightning system in the playground consist of large masts which have a red bottom light that resembles the red poles. The concrete tubes are also used for a horizontal light of a different colour. Masmo/Solhagaparken is proof that good design and an important public space can be created with a small budget combined with good analyses that include natural features (such the dramatic nature) and a close dialogue with the potential users.
Landscape architect: LAND arkitektur
Client: Huddinge municipality
Lightning: Michael Hallbert
Contractor: Y2 Anläggning, Spentab
Project location: Masmo metro station (red line), Stockholm
Area: 12.000 m2
Design year: 2012-2013
Year Built: 2013-2015