The Australian architect Marshall Blecher and Magnus Maarbjerg from the Danish studio Fokstrot have launched a prototype floating island in a Copenhagen harbor. The island is the first step in the Copenhagen Islands project which will see a series of islands floating through the city, bringing life and activity back to the former industrial harborside.
The first prototype titled Ø1 was recently launched and can be found floating around the south of Copenhagen harbor. It is open to the public and has so far been used for BBQing, stargazing, winter bathing, by local fishermen, and has hosted some small events. The 25 sqm island was constructed by hand in the boatbuilding yards in the south harbor of Copenhagen using traditional wooden boat building techniques and features a 6 meters linden tree growing at its center supplied by SITAS (Scandinavian Instant Trees).
The Copenhagen Islands project will see an archipelago of similar floating wooden islands scattered around the harbor supporting various functions. A floating sauna island, floating gardens, floating mussel farms and a floating diving platform could be used freely by boaters, kayakers, and swimmers.
The clear waters of the inner city harbor are being enjoyed by thousands of people every day with water that is now clean enough to swim in and eat some fish from. Copenhagen Islands will make the most of this new paradigm and provide a totally new type of public space for people to use as they please. The islands could be brought together in the wider parts of the harbor for events and festivals, or moved to catalyze activity in newly developed or underused locations.
Marshall Blecher & Fokstrot are working on a range of other projects in the harbor including a floating fish market and a floating cabin with the broader goal of reimagining the relationship between cities and the sea in a time of rapid urban development and sea level rise.