Ellebo Garden Room is the final winner of the Nordic Built Challenge

The first prize in the Nordic Built Challenge goes to the Danish project Ellebo Garden Room that points to new ways towards more climate-friendly construction.
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Annie Lööf, the Swedish Minister for Trade and Industry is handing over the first prize to two actors from the winner team, Daniel Serafimovski and Adam Khan. Photo: Magnus Fröderberg







Nordic Built Challenge, which was launched in 2012 by Nordic Innovation, challenged the Nordic construction industry to renovate five named buildings in the Nordic countries. In September, the five national winners in the competition were announced and the winner of the Nordic Award has now been announced.

The Danish/British team behind the project Ellebo Garden Room received the main prize of NKK 1 million. Adam Khan Architects, Daniel Serafimovski Architects, Kristine Jensens Tegnestue and Price & Myers, with additional support from Klaus Nielsen and Esbensen, won for their innovative proposal for the renovation of a public housing complex in Ballerup outside Copenhagen.


Extract from the jury statement: Ellebo Garden Room is an excellent example of the principles in the Nordic Built Charter and the project has the potential to place the Nordic countries at the forefront internationally in construction.



Innovative proposals
The project includes an innovative proposal for how tenants can remain in their homes during renovation, even during the replacement of the facade.

- To allow the tenants to remain in their homes while they are being renovated is a key aspect of this project. It makes it possible for them to improve the quality of their homes without having to go through the expensive and stressful process of re-housing, which also helps to maintain social ties during the whole process, says one of the winners, Adam Khan.

The Nordic Built Charter places emphasis on both the environmental and the human aspects in the construction and housing sectors. The Ellebo Garden Room project is unique in that it creates huge energy savings and at the same time creates better conditions for the people who live in Ellebo. After the renovation, Ellebo will meet the latest energy requirements and the residents will have new penthouses, balconies, lifts and better access to new, green outdoor spaces.

Therefore, in Ballerup Municipality near Copenhagen, where the housing complex is located, they are very happy with the project.

- In Ballerup we prioritise sustainability in new housing complexes and housing areas that we have been built in recent years. We are therefore looking forward to being able to carry out such a visionary renovation of an existing building", says the mayor Jesper Würtzen.



Great CO2 offenders
Nearly 40% of all CO2 emissions come from our houses and buildings.  Therefore, the Nordic Council of Ministers launched the project Nordic Built in 2011 to boost innovation and cooperation in renovation and adaptation to climate change in existing buildings. The Nordic Built Challenge is part of this initiative, which has received great support from a number of Nordic ministers.


- To renovate buildings to make homes that are more climate-smart is a major challenge we share with the other Nordic countries. It is important that we collaborate across Nordic borders to share knowledge and good solutions in this area", says Sweden's Minister for Enterprise, Annie Lööf, who presented the prize at the meeting of the Ministers for Trade and Industry in Stockholm on 17 October.

- All public buildings should be built based on Nordic Built Charter", said Denmark's Minister for Climate, Martin Lidegaard, in connection with the second Nordic Built Arena in May, where he also underlined the need for closer co-operation between the public and private sectors in this area.


A milestone in sustainable renovation
The cornerstone of the Nordic Built programme is the Nordic Built Charter, which sets out 10 joint Nordic principles for sustainable construction. Over a hundred key players in the construction industry have already signed the charter. Nordic Built Challenge, the goal of which is to demonstrate these 10 principles in practice, has already paid off with a number of innovative proposals.


- Traditional housing from the 1960s, such as Ellebo, will take on a new and strong character. The project will be a milestone and show the way forward in the renovation of thousands of similar housing blocks all over the Nordic Region and Europe", says the chair of Ballerup Ejendomsselskab, John Carstens.

Increasing the interest for sustainable building
The next step in the Nordic Built programme is a call for tenders for a sum of up to NOK 130 million, where Nordic Innovation, in partnership with public institutions in all the five Nordic countries, is bringing players across the countries together to strengthen and develop renovation of buildings in the Nordic countries.

Proposals for a sum of NOK 243 million have been received and a number of projects will now be selected and further developed for the benefit of the entire Nordic construction industry.

- We hope that Nordic Built can increase the general interest for sustainable solutions amongst procurers and suppliers in the building sector both in the Nordic region and abroad, says Trine Pertou Mach, Senior Innovation Adviser at Nordic Innovation and Project Manager for Nordic Built.