November 25, 2010

Kornhamstorg, the "Grain Harbour Square

When you follow Stora Nygatan street, through the old town of Stockholm, known as Gamla Stan, you will reach Kornhamstorg, the Grain Harbour Square. This place is overwhelmed with history, since the square is named after the harbour Kornhamn, where corn delivered to the city by ships was embarked in the
Middle Ages, the corn then stored on an open 1784 2010
space caled Korntorget ,(Grain Square).

In the middle of Kornhamnstorg, one can see the statue called " Bagspannaren" (Bow Bender)by Christian Eriksson. The sculpture shows a young man that ranges his arm bristle. The statue is created in memory of Engelbrekts
fight for freedom in the 15th century.

There is a lot of activity going on in this little
square at the watersite during the day, and
the facades of the buildings surrounding the square make it possible for one to imagine how
Stockholm might have looked during the 17th Century. On Kornhamnstorg number 51, also called the Scharenberg House, you can see a beautiful bay window from the 1630's. The bay window is held by four human figures with expressive faces

During the night, the street lights present
the square in a different way, with its passive
character on one side, and just some few groups
of people gathered under the street lamps.

November 24, 2010

Järntorget (The Iron Square)

The second oldest square in Stockholm, slightly younger than Stortorget, is a small public square in Gamla Stan. Located in the southernmost corner of the old town.

Järntorget dates back to around 1300 and remained the city's most important trade centre for centuries, constantly busy and crowded, scents and noise intermixing while goods were transported from shore to shore across the square and up and down the attics of the surrounding buildings.

In the early 17th century, numerous taverns were located around the square. The city's official scales were relocated to Södermalm in 1662 and the entire area around the square underwent a transformation as wealthy people had taller and more prestigious buildings erected over merged lots.

The development was actively supported by the king who wanted the capital to be more representative, the medieval buildings thus disappearing together with medieval alleys. The development was further promoted by the construction of Södra Bankhuset , the national bank building on number 84 in 1680. The building remained the headquarters of the Bank of Sweden until the early 20th century.

The well centred on the square is made of cast iron, modeled to a british prototype, and was a donation from the National Bank 1829.

In front of the bank building is one of the famous sights, the statue of Evert Taube, which was inaugurated in 1985. The popular troubadour and composer in beret and sun-glasses, with music sheets in his hands.

November 23, 2010


Rinkeby is a resident block bulid up at about 1970`s at the east part of Stockholm.It is build in 5 years which means a really short time from make the decision to finish the project. The structure of the block is quite functional with a ring main road and branch road to every house. The facades somehow shows the background of unified manufactory of the building. Actually, the ugly facades make it unpopular among dwellers. So local inhabitant begin to move out of this place.

In another way, due to the low pavement of rent, this area atract a lot of imigrants to replace the local inhabitants. They come from different conutrys with different colour of skin, language and lifestyle.
Thus, they become the new dominate of this place. The diversity of culture brings inevitable conflicts. The racial or the language deepen the segregation of mainstream social which lead a further inequality of career oppotunity. These together increase the crimial rateof this area as the newspaper always describe it as the worst place in stockholm.

But, actually it is not always true with this discriminate view. In another way, it can be oppotunity of the city as it is the most active place of diversity culture. It could be better if municipal government pay more attention to it.

The diversity brings another problem——language on education, espcially on primanary education. So, we can see a lot of schools here. Using variety of language for different students from different countrys.

November 22, 2010


Opened in 1928, built from a investigation project with a budget of two million SEK that in year 1918 was given to architect Gunnar Asplund who spent a few years researching in Europe and US. Stockholm City library became the major work for Gunnar Asplund and a sign for him as a front figure in Swedish Grace.

The site is Sveavägen 73 in Stockholm, at the edge of an ridge that divides the districts Norrmalm and Östermalm. Neighbouring buildings are from late 19th century and in an area where the new university was to be placed. In the corner where the major street Odengatan meets Sveavägen, as it stretches from Stockholm northern entrance and into the city centre.

The building is a simple composition of a cube and a tube. The tube is rising in the centre and creates a monumental appearance. So those also the broad stair towards the framed entrance. Asplunds first classical design had a cupola instead of the tube. The final outcome had more purified design according to its function and geometry. Only a few ornaments where allowed like Ivar Johanssons Egyptian inspired relief in the entrance, and a fries with different foreign writing symbols on the outside around the building. Gunnar Asplund is most famous for this Swedish Grace building, but this final outcome is also in line with his movement from classical design towards his modernistic design as he used later from the 1930’s

The function of the library is of a single open space containing 700 000 books , (the tube), surrounded by study rooms and light gardens. Introducing in Sweden an US system of public bookshelves where the costumers could pick a book without assistance. Renovations has made the library accessible with wheelchair and lifts are installed in-between the big rooms.

Author and photografer: Åke Hjalmarsson Internet sources: Written sources:Att bygga ett land -1900-talets svenska arkitektur, Claes Caldenby, Arkitekturmuseet/byggforskningsrådet 1998 ISBN 91-540-5813-9 


Söderköping, the last station of our trip to Stockholm, maybe most of us had totally ignored it as it seems to be a quite small and ordinary town but it actually also has its own unique characters and attractions. As the nice fellow from the fast-food shop told us, it’s the Nanjing of Sweden.

Söderköping is a historical town located about 15km southeast of Norrköping.,which is founded in the 13th century around the center square.The city plan is largely the same today however, the medieval settlement was more compact and there were more alleys. The city was once an important harbour and coronation of kings and important parliamentary sessions have been held here.There are many interesting buildings such as the well-preserved medieval church and also some artistic sculptures.

But the most famous feature of Söderköping must be the Göta Kanal, it serves as the Sweden's Blue Ribbon, has a history of more than 170 years, Göta Kanal is today an area of experience with sights and holiday activities for the entire family - all embedded into beautiful nature and unique canal atmosphere. The Canal Harbour in Söderköping with its 50 guest harbour slips and Blue flag standard transforms the city in summertime to a meeting place for people and boats from many places throughout the world. The space along the canal turns to be a popular area for local residents and the tourists.

What’s more, there is also a route for bycicles along the canal,strechs about 100 km,provides a great opportunity to experiance the views in virous ways.
The hills located on the otherside of the canal is also a perfect recreational place for climbing and other outdoor activities.views from the hill are quite fascinating.


Google Earth

Tegnérlunden, Stockholm

Tegnerlunden is a park on the border between the districts and Norrmalm Vasastaden in central Stockholm, situated between Queen Street and Upland Way.

The park is crossed by Tegnergatan. This street forms the border between Norrmalm and Vasastaden.

At Tegnerlunden are including Individual School at Tegnerlunden 5 and Swedenborg Memory Church at Tegnerlunden 7.

Tegnerlunden was until the end of the 19th century one of Stockholm's numerous kvarnberg. Here were two windmills, a built in 1693 which malde grain, the second was a hampkvarn built in 1724. Formerly called the street which leads past Tegnerlunden Trebackarlanggatan. The park was given its current name in 1885 year name audit(together with the Tegnergatan). When was the name Tegnerslunden(with "s") after the poet and the Bishop Esaias Tegner(1782-1846), which however did not have any connection to the site. The Commission's proposal was amended on name in 1932 and finally to Tegnerlunden.

The park was originally created in the 1890s, when the windmills had been demolished. When was the least of all Stockholm parks. There were flower discounts and lawns were not accessible. In the early 1940s omdanades Tegnerlunden sweeping through Stadstradgardsmastaren Holger Bloms proposal together with Erik Glemme. An artificial Brook flow performs pastures, stop at the small water mirrors and a small stone bridge and finally emerge valvs in and irregularly shaped padding dust.

In the eastern part is Carl Tegnerlundens Eldhs large statue of August Strindberg finalised to Strindberg's last birthday in 1912. In 1916 it was full scale model ready and in 1942 was aspired to this bronze sculpture in the park.

In the park's north-east corner, a small bronze sculpture of Majalisa Alexanderson of Astrid Lindgren since 1996, which embraces a child. The sculpture is the people and quotatins from her books. And several of Astrid Lindgren's books are related to Tegnerlunden. Children's book Mio min Mio takes its begining in Tegnerlunden. It is there that the boy Bo Vilhelm Olsson meets the genie that takes him to the Land of Faraway.
Source: Wikipedia, Bing, Google Map

Norrkoping industrial heritage

Norrköping was the first stop during our trip to Stockholm. Norrköping is located in Östergötland province in the east of Sweden. It is only about 135 kilometers from the capital Stockholm. The river Strömmen flows through the city. Because of this rich water resource; Norrköping is one of the earliest cities in Sweden to develop industries and is especially well-known in Scandinavia for its textile industry.

The industry here started in the 17th century. Because of the utilization of water power from Strömmen, the factories were built along the river.

After the Second World War, with the influx of cheap imported textiles from Japan and other countries, the textile industry in Norrköping faced crises. Factories closed one after another during the next years and in 1970 the closure of last large textile company declared the end of textile period in Norrköping, leaving the silent factories. The machines were either sold or abandoned.(Sven Tynelius and John Lovén,1982:3) During the idle period, the Council and the trade in Norrköping discussed the fate of the industrial buildings. At last, they decided to preserve them and use them for different purposes.

In 1971, a historical and cultural inventory of the entire city was started by the municipality.

Today, as result of the step by step transformation, Norrköping is revived as a center of culture and education. It consists of museums, a concert and congress hall, a university, Science Parks, shops and café bars.

There were so many factories in the center of Norrköping that the renewal could not be put in one model, but instead, the models were diversification. The thematic museum model, the shopping mall model, art zone model and community model were all adopted.

Norrköping has been successful to drive support from its history and use to it for the future. The main strategy of industrial heritage protection and renewal in Norrköping is to preserve the industrial buildings and give them new functions.

Entrance of industrial landscape

Aside from the actual buildings, chimneys and sculptures can also record history. There are 13 falls which measure 300 meters long and 18 meters high. Today, the waterfalls are not only used for water power, but also as a characteristic landscape for the Strömmen area.

The chimney by Jan Svenungsson

Additional Part

The river as a reach water resource

The statue of Dutch financier Louis de Geer (considered as a father of Swedish industrialism)

The Protection and Renewal of Industrial Heritage from a Landscape Architect‟s Perspective,Guo Jie