Kiruna City Hall is an atypical building in an atypical place. Located 95 miles north of the Arctic Circle, the city sits atop the largest iron ore mine in the world – but not for much longer. The same mine that brought fortune to the city now threatens to destroy it, as the past century of the industry has rendered the earth unstable. So the city is being moved. Kiruna City Hall is the first building to be moved in the process and stands as a symbol for the city’s future and resilience.
“Community identity often has real geographic roots,” says Henning Larsen Partner and Design Principal Louis Becker. “We knew that during Kiruna’s relocation, losing a sense of place could be a major challenge to the town’s residents. Our hope is that this town hall is not only an effective seat for the local government but a space that celebrates Kiruna’s history and establishes an enduring symbol of local identity.”
The project, which was officially opened in November 2018 by King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden, will compete in the Civic and Community Category for built works. The 2019 World Architecture Festival will be held in Amsterdam from 4-6 December, featuring presentations by the designers of all shortlisted projects.