Skateboarding culture is catching air across the world, making the formerly underground sport one of the fastest growing activities in Europe. In a bid to provide more space for skateboarders in Esbjerg, Denmark, Danish architecture firm EFFEKT unveiled designs to transform an abandoned train depot into a multifunctional sports center. Dubbed StreetMekka Esbjerg, the design placed first in a competition and is a hybrid between the edgy street sport culture and Denmark's industrial history.
Centrally located in Esbjerg, the abandoned roundhouse train depot is one of the city’s oldest buildings. To preserve the structure’s 20th century industrial heritage, EFFEKT restored the structure’s historic circular layout, then renovated and added five multifunctional halls, each with a distinct title: Concrete, Asphalt, Brick, Lounge, and Dance Mekka. The connected halls vary in size and height, and accommodate a variety of activities including indoor skateboarding, street dance, DJing, street art, and basketball.
The five “Mekkas” encircle an outdoor public space with a sunken amphitheater at the center. All of the halls open up to the central outdoor space through floor-to-ceiling openings, which also stream in natural light to reduce reliance on artificial lighting. StreetMekka Esbjerg is currently under construction and is expected to open in winter 2015.
Images via EFFEKT