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Transforming a four-lane road to a new liveable urban area

United Nations sustainable development goal number 11 - sustainable cities and communities

Ten-year project with 19 construction sites

Sweco has worked in close collaboration with Odense Municipality and the developer Realdania on the 10-year project with 300 Sweco engineers, landscape architects and urban planning experts involved in work across 19 construction sites, spanning an area of 51.000 m2, equivalent to the size of seven football pitches.
Sweco’s expertise and services have been central in forming a new urban, green area with smaller streets and squares, favouring sustainable modes of transportation such as cycling, walking and a new light rail to reconnect the heart of a vibrant city.

A green and connected, car-free district with squares and urban spaces for citizens to enjoy city life: this was the vision imagined for transforming Thomas B. Thriges Gade, a busy street in Odense, Denmark.

One of the great things when it comes to engaging Sweco is the vast array of professional expertise available. Another strength was the ability to appoint the right team, resulting in interplay that led to an even better outcome. Sweco solved the challenge in such a way that we have an area people want to utilise and explore. The urban spaces, buildings and surrounding areas form an organic whole. – Stig Langsager, Project manager Odense Municipality

Four lane road divided the city in two parts

A four-lane road divided the city of Odense in two parts for more than 50 years. The development of urban life was hampered by the 25,000 cars that entered the city on a daily basis. In 2008, the Municipality of Odense decided to remove the road and reconnect the city to make a new harmonious urban area. The main challenge in the project was the design of a 600-metre long parking basement to accommodate 1,000 cars in a way that allowed for maximum building usage above the basement.

Removing 25,000 cars from the city centre for a healthier city

By removing 25,000 cars from the city centre, a new super bicycle lane has been established in its place that goes through the neighbourhood. A wide range of other connections create a better flow of transportation across the city centre. The light rail adds another sustainable mode of transportation and thanks to efforts to integrate greenery in the urban landscape: on buildings, rooftops, in the streets and as small parks Odense is a healthier city.

Our general focal point has been to fully connect the city again, removing the divide created by the road. I am hoping that this can give Odense a stronger sense of unity again and that the decisions made in the design process are sustainable long-term, creating quality for both citizens and visitors. – Karen Nørgaard, landscape architect, Sweco Architects

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