At the end of 2011, we were almost certain that BIG's fantastical, double-duty ski resort and waste to energy plant was dead in the water. Now, we're surprised to learn that the project has been given the go-ahead and has already broke ground. According to WAN, work has begun today on the 95,000 sq m Amagerforbrændingen Energy Plant outside of Copenhagen. The plant will incinerate trash and turn it into energy for the city, while also serving as a destination recreation spot and an urban ski resort. We've got a lot of mixed feelings about this project as it burns trash and releases tons of CO2, but we do like the multi-purpose functionality and green strategies wrapped into the design. Guess we'll have to hide and watch.
The project was initially denied because the waste company wanted to increase the capacity of the plant — meaning burning more waste and releasing more CO2. At the same time, Europe has a growing waste problem, not enough landfill space and not a high enough recycling rate to not burn their trash. BIG’s proposal, while certainly not perfect, takes a necessary evil and turns it into something useful.
The project, which broke ground on March 4th, 2013, will take the city’s waste and burn it to create energy. A special smoke stack will track the amount of CO2 is released; every time 1 tonne of CO2 is released, the smokestack will emit a 30m-wide smoke ring to help raise awareness about waste and energy production. Rather than a boring power plant, the top of the facility will be built as a ski resort with runs for all levels and even a terrain park. The surrounding area will also provide expanded recreation space and green areas. Vegetation will be planted in the specially designed exterior to make the plant like a large green mountain.
Ulla Rottger, Director of Amagerforbrændingen, commented on WAN: “BIG’s proposal contributes to the city with something useful and beautiful. We see this creating a lot of opportunities and with this unique building we can brand the Danish knowledge and technology to show the world our abilities within the environment and energy issues.” BIG is collaborating with realities:united, AKT, Topotek 1 and Man Made Land on the design and construction on the new waste to energy Plant.