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Europan 15: Productive Cities 2

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City: Raufoss
Title: River synergies

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Raufoss is located in the district of Toten, surrounded by farmland and forest, with the city of Gjøvik and the Lake Mjøsa in close proximity.

The town is concentrated along three longitudinal structures; the Hunnselva river, the county road and the Railroad. The urban texture consists mainly of neighbourhoods with single-family houses on both sides of the river, an industrial park behind a security fence and various public buildings and shopping facilities.

Beside the industrial park the key elements of the town are Storgata, the mainstreet with the Amfi shopping mall, the city hall and cultural centre, the church and the railway station. Although these functions are not far from each other, the town centre today is perceived as fragmented due to poor physical connections, surface occupation low density, introverted facades and physical barriers such as the security fence, the railroad and the river. These characteristics have made Raufoss turn its back to the river and the nature, and as a result the automotive transportation has become the preferred alternative in the town´s everyday life.

Likewise when Raufoss was first established we look again to the river to ignite a new urban development for the city, extending on Hunnselva and its green structure, interlinking existing and new key elements and creating a dense and dynamic city centre emerging along the river.

The river will also play an important role as a catalyst for ecological transformation of Raufoss. Our concept is to build upon the existing ecology and bring it in to peoples everyday life. The first step is to revitalize the River park, and close off car traffic along the river in the town centre. Further we propose to make the river and green areas available for people. A new River park loop, consisting of a network of walking, biking and slow moving paths, bridges, viewpoints, and other designated points of interest connected to the river. These attractive shortcuts and spaces will give the inhabitants an everyday relationship to the river with year round accessibility.