Tor Ingolf Winsnes
Civil Architect, MNAL
But the plans must contribute to an increasingly vibrant capital for all.
This is a debate post. Opinions in the text are at the writer’s expense.
«Campus Oslo» is the municipality’s report on the city of knowledge from 2018. It shows the potential Oslo has in meeting the knowledge-based future.
The heaviest element in the plan is Blindern / Gaustad with universities, research and hospitals.
The feasibility study for Oslo Science City from last year shows a densification of Blindern and how the area can be connected to Gaustad north of Ring 3, Marienlyst and the planned lid over Majorstuen station. The idea is to urbanize a sector of the city where the buildings today are located in an open park.
Densification of the campus at Blindern and the Norwegian Meteorological Institute is hardly realistic. The demolition of the green areas and spectacular extensions to the old buildings violate the conservation and conservation regulations too strongly.
Marienlyst and the superstructure of Majorstuen station will be privately financed developments on extremely valuable plots. It can only be expensive housing, offices, trade and service. The rent is too high for innovation and entrepreneurship.
Veivesenet put his foot down
The dream of connecting Blindern and Gaustad over Ring 3 has lived on since 1970. The idea is to remove Ring 3 from the surface to allow for a coherent development of the university and research to the north.
The Blindern-Sognplan in the 1970s showed a city of knowledge that stretched from Blindern to the Sports Academy at Sognsvann. The toe tunnel on Ring 3 from 1999 was to be extended as an open culvert with several lids, past Ullevål stadium towards Gaustad. The project was postponed due to costs. Today, the road system is abandoned.
In 2012, the idea reappeared when Campus Oslo was launched to expand Rikshospitalet as a regional hospital across Ringveien. It was to be linked to the University of the Blind and the Research Park. Both a tunnel under Gaustad Hospital and an open culvert with wide lids were launched. Veivesenet set foot in 2014.
The plans were neither technically nor financially feasible.
The feasibility study for Oslo Science City is once again based on the superstructure of Ring 3. The road will now be lowered under a long lid, even though experience indicates that it is not possible.
Leave Rikshospitalet unchanged
The alternative is to build Oslo Science City towards the city center. Public property can be developed. The old city can be revitalized. We avoid relocating heavy infrastructure (Ring 3).
Topographically, it is natural to delimit Oslo Science City towards Ring 3 where the landscape rises steeply.
Let the specialist hospital Rikshospitalet, Domus Medica and the unique Gaustad hospital remain virtually unchanged in a protected cultural landscape on the hill above Ringveien.
The tram line from Rikshospitalet connects the Blindern area to Ullevål Hospital, formerly the Veterinary College and the National Institute of Public Health at Adamstuen and further via Bislett Stadium and the Metropolitan University (Oslo Met) to Tullinløkka and the University in the city center.
Let Ullevål Hospital remain the large hospital in Oslo. There are ample plots of land and functional buildings for the development of a modern hospital. There is also plenty of room for all types of medical research and knowledge-based activities.
Make the city more attractive
The Norwegian Veterinary College and the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH) have valuable buildings and a development potential that, together with Ullevål, can give Oslo a multifaceted knowledge district.
Oslo Met, as a large and creative university, has shown the ability to utilize and transform old buildings to become an urban campus that grows with the city.
Bislett Stadium and Bislett Bath are suitable as a central environmental and identity-creating element with potential for larger and more varied use than today. Tullinløkka connects Oslo Science City to the university in the city center. It provides historical continuity.
The sub-areas are served by the “Knowledge tram” between Rikshospitalet and Tullinløkka.
This is a good environmental policy that can save society large, unnecessary investments
Therese street as a pulsating district street connects the sub-areas in the city center and the outer city together. The street race has room for varied small-scale audience-oriented activities. It will add urban qualities to Oslo Science City and make the city more attractive.
Good environmental policy
The alternative is a sustainable city of knowledge that provides reuse and new life to a number of buildings that are otherwise difficult to provide relevant functions. This applies, for example, to buildings at Ullevål Hospital and the Norwegian Veterinary College.
Large institutional buildings are not always suitable for housing, but can often be used for other types of business.
The enthusiasm for Oslo Science City is important. But carefully consider the realism behind the ideas and how the plans can contribute to the development of an increasingly vibrant capital for all. This is a good environmental policy that can save society large, unnecessary investments.
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