Designer    Case Study 10 Apr 2018
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Discover the story that inspired the design of ‘Ureddplassen’ – an ultra-contemporary seaside bathroom

During World War II a Norwegian submarine, the ‘Uredd’, the Norwegian word for ‘fearless’, was on its way to the Gildeskål coast with agents from the famous Norwegian Kompani Linge Company. Unfortunately, on route, communication with the submarine was lost, and she and her crew weren’t seen again until 1985 when the wreckage of the Uredd confirmed it had hit an enemy minefield and the lives of 34 crew and six soldiers were lost. The following year, Norway’s King Olav V unveiled a memorial to those aboard the Uredd.

Stepping into a new century, Haugen/Zohar Architects were commissioned this year to create the ‘Ureddplassen’ – the ‘Fearless Place’ – an attractive resting place for those who visit the coastal memorial. The whole site was redesigned to satisfy the Scenic Route project requirements of having superior architectural quality and providing services to the public, and included the creation of an impressive bathroom space, the ‘WC Wave’.

Playing true to its name, the WC Wave appears to be one with the terrace; the concrete floor rolls up from the foundation, creating a wave-shaped building, that looks something like a frozen ripple of a tsunami. The door is cleverly positioned beneath the curve of the concrete, meaning users must literally walk beneath the wave to enter the building – crafting a uniquely immersive experience. While the glass walls allow the design to work in every light – with a huge expanse for natural light to influx during the day and ambient, artificial light to shine through at night, so its appears akin to a candlelight vigil. The interior of WC WAVE features all the basic amenities in a stylish, yet practical layout, which ensures it is suitable for disabled users; while a warm, polished concrete floor both increases comfort levels and helps enhance the cohesiveness of the design – allowing it to flow from inside to out, seamlessly.

The most important considerations of the Uredd resting place, beyond the important existing element of the memorial, were the views of the midnight sun to the north, the fjords and mountain summits, and the vast Norwegian ocean, all of which are accentuated by the elongated, plain, fluid, open design of the terrace, water closet, and accompanying benches, crafted from Fauske marble [as seen below].

Architect: Haugen/Zohar Architects

Landscape architect: Landskapsfabrikken

Photographers: Steinar Skaar / Lars Grimsby / Statens Vegvesen

Haugen/Zohar Architects | hza.no