Dorte Mandrup selected for first round of Boliglaboratoriet – a new Danish housing lab

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We're excited to share that we've been selected for the first round of The Danish Arts Foundation and Realdania's new collaboration "Boliglaboratoriet" (The Housing Lab) with our experiment "Rebæk Cohousing Community" – an experiment striving to find the good process for designing a housing scheme that accommodates increasing interest in co-living and sustainability while providing flexibility for user involvement.

There are currently registered 37 different types of families in Denmark. This alone calls for rethinking how we design housing that accommodates different family patterns and new ways of co-living. At the same time, the building industry is responsible for 30-40 percent of the total GHG emissions in Denmark. This calls for radical changes in the way we build and live, considering aspects of geography, identity, demography, and local communities.

It’s not the time to do business as usual, it's the time to experiment – because new challenges require new answers.

That’s the motivation behind the new Housing Lab - a new lab inviting stakeholders of the building industry to come up with experiments that are rethinking housing in Denmark. The Housing Lab offers a space for architects, clients, and other stakeholders to explore how the living spaces of the future can meet new trends and challenges. It will become a platform for developing and debating concrete solutions, as well as documenting, exhibiting, and communicating the results of the experiments. 

With a concrete building site by Rebæk Søpark in Hvidovre, we ask the question: How can we break with the housing market's established, commercial structures to accommodate the increasing need in society for communities in and around the home? Our experiment will answer this by determining the 'good' process for establishing a diverse cohousing community, where residents have an influence on both their homes without compromising architectural quality, the budget, or time schedule.

The experiment is developed in collaboration with AG Gruppen, KAB, IS IT A BIRD, Søren Jensen, Glad Fonden, and Copenhagen Institute for Future Studies.

It's not the first time we explore cohousing communities. Back in 2008, we designed the largest of its kind in Denmark: Lange Eng Cohousing Community.