An eco-village under construction in Copenhagen is redefining what sustainability means within architecture. Instead of focusing on purely renewable energy or green building materials, it consciously addresses all 17 of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.
South of the city centre in Copenhagen, a residential area called Ørestad is being constructed and it may just become the most sustainable neighbourhood on the planet.
While it wouldn’t be the first village constructed with the planet in mind – we’ve written about many such places on the Thred design section – this is definitely trumps the rest for ambition.
The blueprints were put together with one superseding mandate: the project must consider all 17 of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals in some capacity, as opposed to merely focusing on renewable energy and green building materials.
That’s not to say the place hasn’t factored those points in, however. Low-carbon options for buildings materials, like wood and cement have been used, solar panels atop all buildings provide power, and courtyards collect rainwater that can be reused in irrigation.
‘We wanted to put forward something that was comprehensive, challenging, and, importantly, that hadn’t ever been done before,’ says Martin Schultz Nielsen, investment director at NREP, the company behind what’s been named UN17.
The development plans to house 1,100 people within five large apartment buildings and will focus on the central tenet of goal #3, ‘good health and well-being.’
The paths that travel between the buildings and over rooftops are designed to get residents to walk as much as possible, rather than take the shortest route.