Friday, February 05, 2010

Danish commuter hub gets facelift

COPENHAGEN. Wherever you go in the Danish capital you will sooner or later pass through the worn-down Nørreport Station, a commuter hub serving some 300,000 passengers daily.
Now this heart of Copenhagen public transit will finally get a facelift. It will be an operation that surely will affect travel in the Danish capital during construction in 2011-2014.
Tomorrow Copenhageners are invited to a presentation of what “New Nørreport” will look like. The only thing they will recognize is the old, red neon sign with the station’s name.
Nørreport brings together inter-city rail, the commuter S-trains, the relatively new metro and bus-lines. The worn-down building is surrounded by a chaos of parked bicycles. The platforms are dirty and smelly with diesel fumes.
The “New Nørreport” will add further to Copenhagen’s reputation as a pedestrian and bicycling city. Two lanes of traffic will be closed and a new urban space will open up around the station, which can be reached on pedestrian streets leading to the heart of the city.
The new glass and steel building has been criticised by some who see it as out of place, but few will miss the old station. There will also be 11 new ventilation towers bringing fresh air to the underground platforms.
Several new parking spaces for 2,500 bicycles will be spread out around the station, slightly lowered into the ground so as not to disturb the view of the new station.

Illustration: Public Arkitekter/COPE
The "New Nørreport" brings big changes to commuters...

Illustration: Public Arkitekter/COPE
...but they will recognize the old red neon signs.

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