Situated near Tosen Fjord in a remote part of Norway, Storelva hydropower plant was designed by Stein Hamre arkitektkontor, not only as a power plant, but also as a hiking destination and tourist attraction.
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The power plant is situated beneath a waterfall on open solid bedrock. To echo this, Stein Hamre has conceived the building as a massive rock. In order to emphasize its mass, the building is completely clad in horizontal layers of Swisspearl panels in different shades of dark gray, with thin fissures of horizontal strips of glass dispersed across the façades. The glass in the fissures has a high reflection quotient, thus mirroring the natural surroundings, which change throughout the day depending on the natural light. Horizontal Swisspearl panels of varying height dimensions in gray and dark gray read like a stratified rock face looming above the river.
Accommodated within the power plant is all the technical equipment, including Generators and all the high-tech machinery required for the generation of hydropower from water. There is also a control room and a small space to the rear where the transformer is housed. Concrete walls channel the clear rushing water from the building back into the flowing river.
As there are no other buildings in the vicinity, the power plant conveys a strong presence in the surrounding pine forests and river rock bed that rises dramatically above it.
NICE TO KNOW
Stein Hamre arkitektkontor, Mo i Rana, Norway
Meraner & Hauser OHG/SNC, Bolzano, Italy
Read more – Swisspearl Architecture magazine
Find the whole story including an exclusive interview with the architects Ann Neeriemer and Stewart Gregory Swisspearl Architecture #28.Subscribe to our magazine to get the printed issue.