“Sydhavna” is the main industrial port of Oslo. It is located just south of the city center, and is surrounded by the fjord, the hills and both existing and future residential areas. The idea of the buffer zones is to mark the boundary between industrial port and the city, in a way that also contributes to the aesthetic and recreational needs of the nearby community as well as the city as a whole. At the same time these boundaries are also meant to clearly mark port territory and secure acceptance for future development within those boundaries. But the port is not hide and of Port of Oslo has also made aesthetics guidelines to ensure that the development of Sydhavna is unified and harmonious. Color composition, lighting and deliberate placement of the containers are some of the means they will use.

Sketch © Port of Oslo
Illustration plan © Port of Oslo

The first to be completed was buffer zone “Sjursøya”, which marks the western boundary. This area is not accessible to the public, as it is wedged between the fjord and the port. It serves as a landscape park and visual buffer towards the islands of the inner Oslo fjord. There has also been an effort to establish local flora found on these islands to strengthen their habitat, which in some cases are facing the threat of extinction.

The second buffer zone was completed recently and opened in May. “Bekkelagsbadet” is located to the south of the port. This project was developed with cooperation and input from the existing local community. It is a public park that consists of a bathing site with a diving platform, green spaces, a parkour facility, beach volley and toilets. It also has infrastructure to support food trucks and local events. The park is shielded from the industrial port with a fence made of corroded sheet piles, giving the park a rough industrial design to mark the transition to the port.

The third and final buffer zone to the north is yet to be completed. This is now under planning together with an urban development project that will also be the final step to finish the Bjørvika urban development. It is still unclear what this buffer zone will consist of, but it is the largest of the three zones and the design will be subject to an extensive participation process later this year. This zone will also mark one of the two start/end-points of the 10 km long harbour promenade.

Bekkelagsbadet © Port of Oslo
Bekkelagsbadet, Diving platform © Port of Oslo