BO-90 cohousing Copenhagen - in English

See bookmark to google translated 2000 version at :
10/26/2010  So far main page (links) and one page translated using
Google Translate
Google translate is easy to use, it supports Danish to English translation.
So far I copied Danish text and pasted it into translation box.  There should be a way
to enter the URL of a page to translate but I did not find it :(

I have pictures of BO-90 from 1999 when we visited. Near bottom, search for "bo90".

Fred Olson

BO-90 cohousing Copenhagen - in Danish

BO-90                                BO-90                 translated below
Background                           Baggrund              NOT translated here yet
Socially                             Socialt                            "
Organic                              Okologisk                          "
Green Accounts                       Gront Regnskab                     "
BO-90 in figures                     BO-90 i tal                        "
Green Links                          Gronne Links                       "
Contact                              Kontakt                            "
Photos                               Billeder                           "

Lessons from a                       Erfaringer fra et
Social and Ecological Alternative    Socialt og Okologisk alternativ    "


Sections have 3 asterisks and Danish section heading.  Pictures are not here yet.

The building's genesis *** Byggeriets tilblivelse

BO-90 is a group of residents from Nørrebro, in the mid-eighties started to cooperate around the renewal of housing conditions. 18 adults aged 17-61 years with a total of 7 children aged 0-7 years. A mix of skilled and unskilled workers, students / trainees and early retirement. Inner Nørrebro has for the last 30 years undergone extensive renovation. Most of us have lived in the neighborhood during this period, and has also participated actively in the regeneration process. We were thus seen to have improved housing through urban renewal, and lived in all newly constructed or refurbished older properties. And so we should probably be happy .......

But - the immediate satisfaction of this improved standard of housing identified other needs. Needs of urban planners have not taken into account. Need for greater community of autonomy - the right to decide over their own homes, to change the physical environment, ie. flexibility. We stayed before in small nuclear families, in small group homes, as couples or alone. In fact, none of these accommodation facilities adequate to meet needs, we need a little of everything - being alone, close relationship and be with many people. Needs, which generally can not be covered under the same roof.

We would jointly find a solution that could meet these needs, and thereby give us a better housing / a better life. As shown, we were not dwelling purposes needy in the traditional sense, none of us found ourselves in an emergency. When we wanted to move - to move together - it was simply to create a better starting point for our lives. We believe that housing shape plays an important role in this context. We were convinced that the collective benefits (rationalization, joint solution of everyday tasks, gathering and confidentiality between several people) combined with density and sovereignty of smaller units (families, couples, alone) would create favorable external environment for a better life.

Another important fact we wanted to change our project was the usual boligforms inability to ensure both flexibility and be stable. As soon as the individual's or family's needs change, you move to other environments and are thus compelled often to cut roots over. We believe it is important for personal identity, the family and generational solidarity and the relationship with other people that there is a continuous, perhaps lifelong relationship between the individual and the immediate environment. It might be possible to adapt the dwelling to changing needs and thus be in the place you think you belong. Therefore, we gambled on our group was mixed in age - and therefore had different needs for housing sizes, so that we can stay - until we are 90 years ....

It was also a desire that dwellings should express how environmental impacts could be reduced to a minimum. This refers to situations around energy consumption, water consumption, waste and indoor environment.

We wanted to establish the community in Nørrebro where almost all members of the group had lived for some years. By establishing the community in a neighborhood where we already had many local contacts we hoped also to avoid the isolation and self-sufficiency, which otherwise could hit such major housing communities.

There are places, which works on similar principles, but outside the big city. We wanted not to move to the country, we wanted to stay in the city - preferably in Nørrebro - and also felt it necessary to put this development started in urban areas, both in new construction in existing buildings. And finally it was our desire to create community housing as a tenant dwellings rather than owner-occupied, to allow "low-income households" to live there, for example. single people and elderly.

After various unsuccessful explorations in older buildings took BO-90 in 1988 contacted the Association Social Housing (FSB), which included mostly new construction in inner Nørrebro. At the first meeting between BO-90 and FSB also participated Cooperative Construction Industries (KBI). FSB had a plot of Nørrebro and KBI wanted to design something experimental construction. Based BO-90s draft proposals began architects to draw sketches.

After a long planning process that also entailed some financial considerations, there were in 1992 projected a finished house. It contained many interesting individual elements, social, ecological, architectural and energy, and just the sum total of it all makes the house into something unique.

House design *** Husets udformning

The building's architectural design is determined from the urban context it's in. As a result of the environmental initiatives it differs, however, clear from the more traditional buildings in the area. In material terms, the building also differs from the surrounding buildings because of the environmental initiatives, and the desire for flexibility of apartment sizes. The house is built with structural design of steel columns and concrete floors. Partitions and facades are lightweight structures. For materials in the apartment is decisive emphasis on establishing a healthy and comfortable environment, and that by facilitating intervention is possible to change apartment sizes.

On the house's south-facing courtyard side is brought lawns and planted with fruit bushes and trees including currant, quince, currants, apples, plums and pears.

Environmental initiatives *** Miljomaessige tiltag

Prior to the design phase was a list of environmental initiatives, and managed to get most with. Today included the following in house:

Use Water. Fitted water-saving taps and showers. Water temperatures for showers is controlled by thermostatic mixers. The majority (60%) of the water used for flushing toilets is rainwater.

Warming. The largest part of the heating demand is covered by district heating (CHP). Radiator system is designed for low temperature operation.

Solar heating. In the south-facing roof is integrated into a 150 m2 big "tagrumssolfangeranlæg" that harnesses the energy of the hot air in the loft room. Solar heating plant supplies around. 20% of heat energy for domestic water, heating and ventilation systems.

Ventilation. There are balanced ventilation in the house for reasons of both energy and indoor climate. The plant is equipped with an efficient heat recovery system and will also pre-heated air from tagrumssolfangeren.

El. Use low energy lighting in all common areas. When choosing appliances, the emphasis is on low energy consumption. Some of the residents have purchased shares in wind turbine nearby guild equivalent to 37,000 kWh (87% of total electricity consumption).

Climate Monitor. The windows are fitted with energy efficient windows. The placement of the windows are taken account of the use of passive solar heating. Walls and ceiling are insulated better than building regulations prescribed by the construction.

Waste. There are given permission to enter the house without a chute. Residents sorted by 1998 the waste at source in 16 fractions: green compostable, paper, glass, cloth, lead, batteries, medicines, chemicals, paints, fluorescent lamps, thermometers, lavenergipærere, bulky waste, fridges / freezers, residual waste and recyclable items (our own mini flea market, things you otherwise might have been discarded).

Since March 1998 we sort into 28 fractions, with established environmental station in the courtyard shared by the entire city block - the first in Inner Nørrebro.

Development of building case *** Gennemforelse af byggesagen

Construction started in spring 1992 and the house could be tenants in March 1993. The building is built as subsidized housing and should therefore be kept within the framework mapped out by housing legislation.

The environmental measures increased construction costs by approx. 2 million. (Approx. 20%) out of the envelope. Various private foundations and providers and public institutions accounted for the majority. The tenants association has even raised a loan of DKK 300,000 in Rainbow Box.