A small community center built in CLT wood renews the local cityscape
The new parish centre in a suburb to Copenhagen, is a modern gesture of sustainability – a gentle mark in wood that brings people together.
The Parish Centre adds a new welcoming gathering space to Brønshøj and creates a new connection between the city square and the church that was blocked before. This is a modern church and parish center, that aims to open up towards the community in a bright, honest and welcoming atmosphere integrated in the local urban context and everyday scenes in the center of Brønshøj.
In 2015 NORD Architects won the competition for a new Parish Centre with a proposal that unified the church, city and congregation in a new cultural community, where everyone could feel welcome, being a part of the parish and city. 250 scouts are associated to the center and use both indoor and outdoor facilities.
“We have designed a multifunctional building that provides an open and welcoming space for flexible usage within a modern parish centre that gather people in very varied activities. The large span of CLT wood accommodates this is one gesture and connects the two opposite outdoor spaces. The church on one side and the city on the other” says Morten Rask Gregersen, partner at NORD Architects.
The building is constructed in massive wood, the so called CLT, Cross Laminated Timber elements and sets a new standard for a large free span that can cover the main space. As a natural wood product, the CLT provides a healthy and comfortable indoor climate and is a sustainable choice for building materials with a low carbon footprint and durability. Some of the many advantages of CLT as a natural material is that it works as a stabilizer of humidity, acoustics and temperature, which creates indoor conditions that feel friendly and comfortable to live and work in.
The CLT wood is left visible in the large multifunctional space running through the building from one end to the other and connecting the city square with the quiet pastor garden behind the parish center. The curved walls of the building embrace the urban space, open up towards the garden and create a sensitive meeting with the neighboring rectory. The exterior cladding in ash wood creates a warm ambiance that signals the informal use of the parish center as a community with diverse users and activities.