The extension of the existing New York Kindergarten into former industrial buildings has a strong focus on culture, performance and sharing of experiences. It consists of four bases for 18 children each, organized around a common auditorium staircase for communal activities such as music, theater, film, play, dance and sharing photos and experiences from excursions. The staircase connects the two main floors. In addition the kindergarten includes theme rooms for art, culture, nature and diversity. The premises are built up from a child’s perspective and use of space. The scale is deliberately manipulated in a continuous sequence of compressed and open spatial sequences. The large open space creates an overall framework in which the variation in plan and section creates intimate rooms for small groups with secret play areas only accessible and designed for children. The auditorium staircase, as a large piece of furniture, defines the various spaces above, below and around. The bases are located on the mezzanine to be in contact with, yet secluded from, the main space.
In 2012 the refurbishment of the former industrial buildings, designed for the textile firm Indigo by architects Ove Ekman and Einar Smith and erected from 1896 to 1899, was completed. This area along the Akerselva was historically referred to as Ny York due to its explosive development in 1858. Like its sister city, today the area reflects a similar transformation towards a district focused on art, architecture and design, including DogA, AHO, KHiO, and Dansens Hus and now OCA. In collaboration with our client Lars Hellebust, the buildings of historical value were transformed into a new cultural area.
The project has been developed in a close collaboration with the local heritage authorities to maintain the buildings’ and area’s characteristics. The transformation was rewarded with Oslo City’s Architecture Prize in 2012.
Signal Mediahus ANS
Nedregate 5, Oslo, Norway
Nedregate Cultural District
1 150 m2
Renovation of existing 18th century factory building to kindergarten with a cultural profile.
Adam Kurdahl, Gary Bates, Gro Bonesmo, Wenche Andreassen, José Hernandez, Jens Noach
Ivan Brodey, Space Group
Oslo City’s Architecture Award 2012