Bikuben Student Residence

Copenhagen, Denmark
Photo © Torben Eskerod
Photo © Torben Eskerod
Photo © Torben Eskerod
Photo © Torben Eskerod
Photo © Torben Eskerod
Photo © Torben Eskerod
AART / architects
1M - 100M
5-20 Stories

PROJECT: Bikuben Student Residence

CLIENT: Bikubens Kollegiefond

SIZE: 7,000 sq. m.

PRIZE: The Copenhagen Municipality's Architecure Award

The vision behind Bikuben Student Residence is to rethink the social environment for student life and to expand the possibility that communities can arise in a broad social network. By creating an inspiring spatial environment and maximise the opportunities for fellowship, the student residence seeks to avoid the loneliness and lack of social relationships that many students highlight as a problem with their current housing situation.

In order to satisfy the project’s social vision, the design process entailed working closely with anthropology students from the University of Copenhagen. This has resulted in a building with a strong identity, which reflects the student residence’s bearing idea of community, and is designed on the basis of an overall concept that is carried further down in scale to the functional level.

Bikuben Student Residence appears as a cube, but is actually a double helix, which in its path around the central axis in the form of a courtyard, provides space for various indoor and outdoor spaces. The kitchens, living areas, gym, laundry facilities and roof garden are therefore staggered at different levels, where the kitchens and common areas are oriented inward toward the central courtyard. The student residence thereby avoids the classic dormitory corridors and instead creates a space where access to the rooms is linked directly to the social meeting places.

The double helix structure creates an architectural whole, and connects the social life of the student residence across the different floors. In this way, the spiral structure provides the greatest possible contact between common and private spaces, while ensuring privacy in each dwelling. By rethinking the social space, Bikuben Student Residence has attracted major international attention and has recently represented Danish architecture at the Venice Biennale 2010.

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