THE BRIEF The brief was to create a 75 Ha, 500 home, 5 phase, eco extension to the existing town.
Solearth added this brief the goal of creating a project that would be one of the worlds first to embody the spirit of and comply with the imperatives of The Living Community Challenge.
THE CONCEPT The design impetus for Solholm wass to connect the new community to the existing town, to create both local neighbourhoods and a larger sense of a new community, to welcome the sun into streets and buildings, to embrace and regenerate nature, and to prioritise walking and bicycle over cars. Additionally Solholm will meet all of its own water and energy needs. Significant food productions is also possible meaning much of the inhabitants requirements can be met from the 75Ha site while enhancing nature.
A new town square is created at the overlap of new and old town. It acts as a new social and cultural heart for the town, provides a termination of Tofthøjvej and is adjacent to the town railway station. It is the door to Solholm’s Kascades (a network of lush, sensory greenways that allow both nature and people move, linger and interact), the primary circulation spines through the new community; a network of waterside paths, decks and bridges which allow all residents move around and meet while being safe and separated from cars.
Homes and buildings are set out so as to maximise sunlight and minimise wind and to nurture neighbourhoods and communities. Apartment, terrace and single family houses are organised into a module that is repeated throughout the phases and areas of the scheme but always being tuned and varied to suit the local conditions, create a sense of place and to foster friendships. Between the street buildings (houses and apartments), semi private neighbour gardens facilitate immediate neighbours to become friends. These in turn flow into the larger community of Solholm which flourish along the Kascades.
While traffic can reach each home, it is confined to the periphery of the neighbourhoods and does not obstruct the community life in the homes, neighbour gardens or Kascades.