Demolish and build new – but also preserve.
As the former Skeppskajen industrial area in Uppsala grows, the work is done with a careful hand.
– The beautiful brick buildings that remain give character to the area, you keep a link back in time, says Sofia Wahlén, regional manager east for housing development at Ikano Bostad.
For over 150 years, the Ångkvarnen neighborhood at Skeppskajen was the hub of Uppsala’s food industry. Here, on the eastern side of the Fyrisån opposite the Students’ IP, factories, mills and silos dominated the silhouette.
– It is a massive and closed area that was taken over by industry. Many Uppsala residents associate it with high fences and locked gates, the industry has blocked the opportunities for surrounding areas to reach the Fyrisån. Now it will open up with crooked alleys that wind down to the path towards the water, says Sofia Wahlén.
Today, the industry has left, which has opened up a new district – in the middle of central Uppsala. The classic brick buildings Yästfabriken, Spegelkvarnen and Tegelsilon will remain and be upgraded. They will contain both commercial premises and meeting places for the public.
– In contrast to the 1970s, when violent demolitions were carried out, today care is taken to preserve buildings that are valuable to our history. I think they are incredibly beautiful buildings that really become an asset to the entire area.
While Atrium Ljungberg focuses on the brick buildings, Ikano Bostad and Besqab are responsible for the construction of the residential blocks, a total of 900 homes. And here too, Skeppskajen’s industrial history will be present – literally.
– The semolina factory will be demolished and from there we can use recycled bricks for the first block we build. Brick is a living and vibrant material which, in terms of colour, will give the ground floors of the houses a bit of an industrial feel, says Wahlén.
What advantages are there in working with other actors in this project?
– The big advantage is that both we and Besqab are long-term and stable companies. We have a slightly different orientation and that means we get a better breadth of what we build, perhaps a slightly greater breadth of architecture as well. You may think it’s easiest to work on your own, but I think it’s positive to collaborate and learn from each other.
Just like other areas Ikano Bostad develops, a clear strategy is the basis for how Skeppskajen is designed. This mainly applies to the parts for which the company itself is responsible, but also to the area in general:
– We have a clear idea with surface-efficient apartments for a broad target group that can afford to buy the home. We try to be affordable and that business idea holds up even better in these times, says Wahlén and continues:
– The joint design program provides the context for our homes, the area should be lively and then you need to mix it up a bit. There is a park designed, three preschools that provide activity during the day, service and restaurants.
– We also have our courtyards, where we have also studied the sun’s position for the best placement of common patios or invested in proper playgrounds. There are plenty of meeting places in Skeppskajen.
How do you think Skeppskajen will be received by Uppsala residents?
– We had a market in the area a few weeks ago and I spoke to many visitors, several who lived nearby. I feel that everyone is looking forward to the old industrial area being opened up, that it will be much cozier with the pedestrian streets and an inviting environment.
The article is produced by Brand Studio in collaboration with Ikano Bostad and not an article by Dagens industri