Perched in the middle of a fixed agricultural territory lies Raufoss, a town home to cutting edge industry. Its thrilling innovations evolve however behind a security fence. The industrial activities are not at all mirrored in the town itself, which also lacks activity, public amenities and places for people to socialise.
The brief raises complex yet exiting issues about the relationship between the rural and the industrial. With this project we propose an elaborate scheme that bridges the gap between industry park and town. An interface establishing a vibrant centre for Raufoss by combining the high-tech with the people-oriented.
A company town without a center At first sight, Raufoss could be compared to a typical company town due to the relationship it has with its gigantic industrial park. However, a closer looks tells us that the town seems to have turned its back towards this productive area with its existence seemingly neglected and made invisible. A relevant part of the community’s identity lies behind a fence, bordered by a little river.
In Raufoss’ streets it is quite difficult to perceive that this small town is such an important hub for hyper-modern innovation. The surrounding nature and arable lands are outstanding, yet somehow most of the settlements seems generic. The lack of a proper centre tells us about a place which didn’t formalize its consistent know-how into an architectural form and a spatial configuration. The centre cannot be just the street of Storgata. Raufoss needs a centre, a place where the people that live and work here can stay and create a sense of community.
We want to reveal the true identity of Raufoss which is projected into innovation. A new centre has to be defined by creating a sequence of public spaces around buildings with a vibrant functional mix.