Available Space

Caring for the commons had to be a multiple task, organized from the ground up and shaped to cultural norms.
Residents lost the connection to their space. Residents have to realise their own responsibility and start acting and organising their community by themselves.
If the opposition between humanity and nature is now suspended, how do we change our perspectives and perception? Is it still possible to think in concepts of “artificial” and “natural?-this is part of the atropocene—

During our stay in Tromsø we were having a research on the changing water and land relations of the Tromsø island. Comparing historical geographic and topographical maps with current maps, showing property lines, we quickly identified the area around the Art Academy as a site to focus on. The area around the Art Academy is interesting for several reasons. It is one of the key development areas of Tromsø. It`s a former industrial area for Macks beer production, now opening up its factory fences as the beer production has moved out of the center. The Mack site is representing a southern city border, and the future development on the site is likely to stretch Tromsø city southwards. Alternative plans have been presented for a shopping center, but until the battle has settled, a temporary program has moved in: car parking lots. Europark is temporary managing the area making good money on surface car parking, quite symptomatic for temporary use of space in Tromsø.

The ragged and small- scaled expression of the early sea front of Tromsø tells the story of how Tromsø`s development was so intimately connected to the sea. Coastal cities were organized around their harbors, the sea being the main road to the rest of the world.

Most of the site is a landfill, filled out to serve the needs of space demanding industry. As sea becomes land it is also being regulated: What are now property lines and regulation boundaries used to be unregulated sea space? a 100 years back. How could this map look in a hundred years to come?

In this workshop we started an investigation on “available space” and the idea of ‘reclaiming sea’, with the purpose of searching for alternative ways. The term “available space” is definitely up for discussion. It would be owned and regulated, but would typically be under-programmed, a leftover after planning or an in-between in time, awaiting a future program. How can Tromsø’s ‘under-programmed in-betweeness’ be used differently to serve as enrichment for the people of Tromsø? What could be a contribution to a more sustainable living in the city?







« back to Göteborg – Tromsø – A City as a Garden