Folkets Hus (The People’s House) is the first building to be completed in the redevelopment of Fisksätra – a suburban residential area outside Stockholm. The building, culture, and youth center with great social responsibilities in the community of Fisksätra is meant to be provisional with a temporary building permit, and the outcome can be described as a contemporary version of a traditional tent structure. A similar example (and early reference) is the famous Copper Tents in Hagaparken in Solna, Sweden, built between 1787-1790, which also were meant to be provisional, but remains to this day and have grown to be a landmark of Stockholm.
One of the main challenges in this project was social sustainability. Fisksätra Folkets Hus is an organization that plays a key role in bringing the diverse population of Fisksätra closer together, but the former building was located far from the center. Therefore, it was crucial to place the new building center stage, where it can be both seen and heard.
Thus, the new building is located in the heart of the community, near the commuter station, and is designed to attract people of all ages and backgrounds. Both the facade and roof are clad with sinusoidal profiled color coated steel plate, and the eye-catching pale green color creates a vibrant contrast to the neighboring orange brick apartment buildings. The main design element is a 30-meter-wide eye-shaped skylight over the central atrium. The interior is as simple and durable as the outside, with few materials and colors, and the rooms are flexible and bright.
The unique triangle shaped windows resemble the openings of a tent and makes the rooms appear larger than they are. The floors are sanded concrete and massive pine wood, and the walls are clad with white painted wood panel. The pale coloring of the interior was chosen to create a backdrop for the colorful activities that takes place there.
The project also had a limited time frame and was completed – from initial sketch to final inauguration — in one year. The aim was to create a design that would be popular among the numerous children who lives in the area, to create a positive vibe and a sense that change is coming – change that is good for the community.