The Faroese population scatters amongst the small nation’s many islands, linked together in the vast North Atlantic canvas by an assortment of ferries and bridges. Links on land can be more tenuous. Villages fan out across the isles, close enough to share resources but distant enough to remain distinct. When the municipalities of Gøta and Leirvík joined, they decided to unite their two towns—two identities—under a single roof. Looking at the connections that hold together the islands, the question arose: could a bridge also be a civic house?
The single-story ash black structure makes its way crookedly over the water like a piece of driftwood cast far up the shore. The asymmetrically pitched roof slopes lightly down towards either riverbank to let locals pass over its turf to move between the towns. When night falls, the floor-to-ceiling windows on the north and south façades backlight interior movement like puppets in a shadow play.
Once inside, the weathered exterior feels miles away. A wooden scrim wraps the interior, absorbing the howls of winds that glance off the water and bathing the space in a snug glow. On sunny days, a porthole on the floor turns the council chamber into a kaleidoscope as light dances across the water below. Nature is never far away.
Eystur Town Hall renews a fragment of the past, its green roof replanting the field for community in a new era. As the islands continue to grow, it is the first taste of an emerging Faroese architectural tradition.