Samling: using wood to create a new identity
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Samling: using wood to create a new identity

Helen & Hard

Samling: using wood to create a new identity
Edited By Editorial Staff -

Located in the village of Sand, Samling was created by Helen & Hard, winner of the competition organized by the Norwegian municipality of Nord-Odal. The jury described Samling as “the most remarkable proposal, with strong signature effect, both inside and outside. It is designed holistically, where layout organization, construction, and materials coalesce for an inclusive and inspiring spatial experience.”

The building and square not only give the Norwegian village a new identity but also help fuel its revitalization. Incorporating numerous functions to meet the cultural, social, and economic needs of citizens, the project is intended to be the main local gathering space.

What makes Samling extraordinary, though, is that it combines ten apartments, a bank, offices, and a library in a single building. The building itself is relatively compact with a large central atrium where people can relax, meet, or just plan their day. With its radial composition, the atrium forms the hub of the building, from which all the building’s other functions branch off.

The exterior is marked by a strong compositional dynamism, underscored by its curving balconies. Each apartment is on a single level, therefore avoiding any vertical division of the elevations and contributing to the gentle sweep of the exterior. The timber slat cladding is articulated to define each floor.

Almost all building materials are timber – a green material but also one that has unique aesthetic and sensorial qualities. Its extensive use, both as an exposed internal structural material and as cladding, makes the building highly sustainable and in perfect harmony with the local, and Scandinavian, culture and industry.

Architect: Helen&Hard
Location: Nord-Odal, Norway 
Year: 2017 - 2020
Photography by © Ivan Brodey
courtesy of Helen&Hard

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