The square in Trondheim

Agraff is proud to present the new design of the square, Torvet, in Trondheim. It is the heart of the city, where hundreds of people pass through every day. Torvet is the arena for most of what the city and its people have to offer; from the crowning festivities and parades to festivals and street musicians. The main challenge was to design a space which was flexible enough to room these varied functions, both the formal ceremonies and parades as well as the more playful activities and festivities. We were able to use all our knowledge of complex city development in this project.  

The overall design idea was to divide Torvet into zones, with furnishing zones and pedestrian zones surrounding the open space. One of the furnishing zones stretches along the outer walls of the surrounding buildings, which facilitates the possibility of outside serving from inside the buildings – both restaurants and cafés. On the outside of the furnishing zone is an open pedestrian zone, which borders another furnishing zone. It inhabits fixed tables and chairs, vegetation in boxes and sitting benches. Here one can enjoy a to-go coffee or home-brought lunch while taking in the details of your surroundings.

If you take your time, you can discover exciting details, those tiny treasures of the project which make it exciting to come back again and again. May it be the pattern in the water grate on the ground or the water post with the engraving of Nidelven’s course, the river running through Trondheim. A collaboration with Restaureringsverkstenden’s s stone masons has resulted in sensational details on the stone benches. Even the stone slate-covered ground is inspired by patterns found in the Norwegian traditional Åkle and lives its own life depending on weather and the changing seasons. The design is built on the pillars of solidity and the city’s spirit and history, which makes the experience of visiting Torvet feel both new and known.

The new design of Torvet brings to mind the lively public plazas one usually associates with the south of Europe at the same time as it has preserved Norwegian urban aesthetics. Planning and site monitoring in such a project requires an understanding of urban space and how the city works, both in terms of function, movement, maintenance and details, infrastructure and technology. Agraff had the task of completing the preliminary design and detailed design. The square was opened by Trondheim’s mayor in the summer of 2020, after several years of excavation and construction work. In 2020, the renewed Torvet was awarded the Landscape Architecture Prize, awarded by the Norwegian Association of Landscape Architects.

Other designers involved in the design of landscape (architects and other landscape architects): Artist Edith Lundebrekke

Design year: 2015

Year Built: 2020

Photographer: Glen Musk and Kristoffer Wittrup

Domain: project website

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