Kollaboratoriets entry to the open call from gallery 0047 and Arkitektur N.
As a symbol, Høyblokka exists in a state of narrative limbo. It is without question part of a story, but it is one which is not yet known. Its meaning will be determined by what happens next.
It would be easy to fill Høyblokka with guarded offices and locked doors – as easy as it would be unacceptable.
We are inclined to pursue utopias, yet the state of the public discourse makes us realise the inherent futility of this we are not faced with poor alternatives, but with their complete absence.
Finding a program that carries sufficient weight to coexist with the symbolic content of the building proves to be the main challenge. Additionally, a new program must be important enough to both provide a considerable socio- economic value as well as reviving the surrounding public spaces. Student housing is one such program.
The demand for student housing is insatiable. Being able to provide it in such a central location, in a part of the city so desperately in need of a more diverse urban life, would be of great value.
This program ensures that the building remains public property. Both the roof and the artworks embedded in the stairwell can be made available to the general public. The facade can be preserved, independently of any interior changes, and the relationship to Y-blokka can be strengthened by expanding the program to encompass both buildings and their adjacent public spaces.