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    • 20 February 2018

      A new bank, a new openness

      Nordea’s new headquarters in Ørestaden, Copenhagen, illustrates how a bank can open up in a way that supports interaction with the surrounding city.

    • The new Nordea Headquarters sets the tone for a new openness in the financial sector. Nordea is a Nordic bank, and with the new headquarters, employees and customers are given a building inspired by the grand Nordic landscapes as well as Scandinavian ideals of transparency and openness. The building is designed as a transparent house that meets the city with friendliness and openness. Passers-by on street-level have visual access to many conference rooms and offices, and simultaneously employees have the feeling of working in close connection to both the city and the unique biotope of Amager Fælled.  

      Despite the security level indispensable to a financial institution, we have created a building where the two large atrium spaces are tied together by a publicly accessible inner streetscape. Here, clients, as well as people wishing to cross through the building, are showered with daylight through massive skylights. From the inner streetscape, visitors can also look directly inside of the bank through internal glass facades. Visual contact is established throughout the building, across conference rooms and offices, quiet rooms, balconies, stairways and dining areas.

      Throughout the day, employees can look out on Amager Fælled and the city, and in return, the city can feel the transparent presence of the bank.

      A Soft Transition

      The vegetation on Amager Fælled plays an important part in the planning of the landscape surrounding the bank and in the ambition to design a financial institution that meets the city openly and transparently. We have created a soft transition between adjacent Amager Fælled and the building by planting local plants and trees that almost embrace the facades. To the South, sheltered areas with benches have been placed for pedestrians to enjoy a break. Employees can enjoy their lunch on the great outdoor terrace close to street level.

      Transparency is not a given in the financial sector. In most cities, trading floors are isolated, tucked away behind thick walls. 600 traders have recently settled into Nordea’s new headquarters in Copenhagen. A stunningly crisp, transparent façade ensures that traders will work with a view of Copenhagen’s scenic Amager Faelled, and commuters can look directly into the trading floor when passing the headquarters on the metro. 

      The ambition to create an open and transparent bank with scenic views and visibility from the outside is now setting new standards for working environments in the financial world.