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Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.

Community center & sports facility “Pulsen” in Balling, Denmark by Park Architecture

August 20th, 2011 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: Park Architecture

Design strategy

The brief called for a 3.500 sqm combined community center and sports facility with emphasis on sustainability both in construction and use. But rather than applying the traditional repertoire of green technologies to the building, after initial concept design was developed, the client called for an architecture that in itself embodied the idea of the sustainable approach. A precise objective that called for bold strategy.

South view

  • Architects: Park Architecture
  • Project: Community center & sports facility “Pulsen”
  • Location: Balling, Denmark
  • Type: Competition entry
  • Year: 2011
  • Status: Honorable mention

Interior view from cafe

The building plot is surrounded by a vast green area with sports fields and recreational spaces. The obvious would be to make a flat building – a 1 level structure that sprawls into the surroundings. We chose a different approach: By stacking the functions on top of one other we fulfill a number of key objectives.

West view

First of all, the tall building stands out in the extensive agricultural landscape, and in the town of Balling, in which all buildings are one level. Being lifted above the ’skyline’ of Balling offers spectacular views for the building’s users. The tall building becomes a beacon visible from afar – a green landmark in a very literal sense.

East view

The tall building is more compact than the flat one, so it has less surface area – and a smaller footprint. This leaves more space for the sports fields at ground level. And finally the building takes its place in a genealogy of vertical beacons that has throughout history has become symbols of different eras.

North West view

Masterplan concept
The building relates to three existing functions on the site: the school, the existing sports arena and the sports fields. Our proposal for the masterplan connects these functions by means of two elements: a central plaza and a landscaped pathway.

Diagram volumetric context

Building envelope
The building has the shape of a cube – four stories high and 25 meters deep. The perfect cube is fitted with a parabolic roof, which gives it the characteristic profile. This ’inverted dome’ offers a number of possibilities for rainwater harvesting, natural ventilation and passive solar heating. The parabolic roof is a light wooden mansard, that sits on top the concrete structure. The idea of gravity has been a major factor in integrating the distribution of the programme with the structural design; the lighter part of the building is placed on top, while the heavier is situated in the bottom.

Diagram staking

Programmatic analysis

Diagram footprint analysis

Diagram gravitational distribution

Diagram features

Programmatic Diagram

Axo Entrance level

Axo multipurpose hall

Entrance Plan

Plan Multipurpose hall

Contact Park Architecture

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Categories: Community Centre, Sports Complex

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