In the Danish town of Helsingør (Elsinore), the old wharves are fast being converted into a modern cultural center. The new Culture Yard designed by the Danish architects office of AART provides a total of over 13,000 square meter of space for leisure-time facilities. The key element of the complex is the new main library, which boasts reading rooms that run across three storeys. Moreover, with the Dockyard Museum, a large theater and conference hall, exhibition and convention facilities, workshops and a restaurant the ensemble has many attractions to offer.
Along the seafront, a line of faceted glass prisms creates a curtain enclosing the brick façade and acting like a net cast over the historical walls. The architects recount that "the Culture Yard symbolizes Elsinore's transformation from an old industrial town to a modern cultural hub. In this way, the yard is designed as a hinge between the past and present, reinforcing the identity of the local community, but at the same time expressing an international attitude, reinforcing the relation between the local and global community."
For all the expressive façade structure, the historical building with its former industrial character remains clearly discernible. At the same time, the transparent shroud functions as an access path and to condition the air in the building.
Alongside the conversion of the old dockyard building, the project also included redesigning the harbor basin, creating a modern museum about seafaring (it is located in the old dry-docks next to the dockyard buildings) and modernizing Kronborg Castle, which is a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site and came to fame as the venue of Shakespeare's Hamlet.
Look at the new culture yard in Helsingor, Denmark, designed by AART Architects, Aarhus DK | All photos © Adam Mørk
In order to prevent the rays of the sun from over-heating the light-suffused entry atrium and the glass corridors, some 4,700 square meters of “GEWE-therm® sun” solar protection glass manufactured by Schollglas was used
A wafer-thin metal coating on the panes of glass reflects the solar radiation
In addition, the superimposed perforated steel panels provide partial solar protection
The coating, which consists of precious metals or metal oxides depending on the process used, is applied on the outer panes as a interim layer