To turn something functional into something aesthetic. To turn something necessary into something lovely. Bringing a car park to life. A place where everyday life can be parked and dreams be realized. 9,000 square-meters parking house of fiber cement panels, cobber trough and a large mosaic glass eye.

Multi-storey car park
Fredericia, Denmark

With Kirstine Roepstorff’s car park, the concrete is brought to life in the middle of Kanalbyen, it breathes and drips and shines – a living house.

The parking garage is the condition of the area, to be at home is to leave your car. In addition to its simple and streamlined economically profitable functionality, the car park opens up to its surroundings, reaching out to its users. Architecturally as well as functionally, the ambition is to shape a small oasis on the outskirts of Kanalbyen: a garden that spreads out towards the facility’s closest neighbors and the parking garage itself shrouded in planting and atmosphere. The whole open construction strives for sustainability, it seems meaningful and necessary to let concrete and machines follow with the water and the air and nature. To leave its engines in a house that breathes of movement.

Here, the function also becomes aesthetic, the habits and necessity get a touch of beauty. And with an everyday house that lives, a daily emphasis of time is also built: architecture and art side by side, as a being who with age becomes more beautiful and stronger, and is a kind of promise of something lasting and stable.

As a necessity and a gesture to life between the houses, the new car park strives to be more for its users than a parking space. The size of the construction makes it naturally eye-catching, but with the decoration, Roepstorff wants to make it an eye-catcher that also invites the eye, the thought and the sensitivity inside. One can imagine the house as a box wrapped in four reliefs that with glass, concrete, play of light and shadow, planting and water set the whole facility on stage. The versatile materiality opens up potentials for sensuality across the concrete and the abstract: concrete music in the reliefs, the changeable poetry in water, sun and shadow through the building. The sensitivities of nature are brought into the built environment and bring it to life with a house where light and air and aesthetic vibrations flow freely.

“First you find out what the users need, then you make a sketch, and then you find dealers and installers who can bring the ideas to life. Only then do you find out what’s feasible. It’s a negotiation process that requires good collaboration,” says Roepstorff.

Experience the artwork at Kanalbyen, 7000 Fredericia, Denmark.

HYDRA has been realized in collaboration with Statens Kunstfond, A. Enggaard A/S and Kanalbyen and financed by A. Enggaard A/S, Arbejdernes Landsbank, Beckett Fonden, Den Jyske Kunstfond, Ewii, Ny Carlsbergfondet and Statens Kunstfond.

Kanalbyen and Studio Roepstorff.


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