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Europan 11


Formerly being associated with waste and bad smell, how can Grønmo be transformed into something positive?


In its hay day, the Grønmo landfill used to be the largest in Northern Europe. Having functioned as Oslo’s main spot for the unwanted since 1969, Grønmo counted over 8 million cubic meters of trash, (or more than 3 times the volume of the Cheops pyramid) when it closed in 2009. An enormous, artificial landscape built up from household waste, industrial waste, asbestos, hydroxide sludge, fly ash and more, fills up the former valley-scape. Today the waste is covered by a thin, green dressed, top cover preventing surface water from reaching in. Furthermore, over 200 gas wells perforate the mounds of Grønmo, making sure the continuous methane discharges, due to the anaerobic digestion of the waste, are directed into the nearby incinerator rather than let out in the open air.


Formerly being associated with waste and bad smell, how can Grønmo be transformed into something positive? The municipal vision is to create a model pro ect internationally on how disused disposal sites can be given new uses and new identity. Can Grønmo become an attraction and a meeting place in the future? Can Grønmo take an instrumental role in increasing understanding and awareness on waste issues and recycling?

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Grønmo offers a unique opportunity to create an area with activities and ways of participation that are new to the general perception of green experiences. It is possible to define sports, movement, nature and culture from completely new premises. Grønmo is a man-made landscape that has no history of recreational or built-in expectations about specific activities on offer.

The competition asks for innovative responses on two interrelated tasks: a concept and design of the overall landscaping plan, and a proposal for new uses and identity.
What can the new Grønmo become?


The assignment is to create a challenging recreational area on a disused disposal site, and at the same time preserving its history by continuing the recycling facility and to facilitate for an exciting learning arena. 

The learning area shall be designed to help increase understanding and awareness of waste issues and recycling potential and challenge users to find creative new solutions for waste minimization and recycling. As the city of Oslo grows, the need of good recreational areas increases. 

“Recapture Grønmo” represents a unique possibility to provide better living standards in a quicklygrowing suburban area.

Site facts

Oslo, Søndre Nordstrand
600 000
Project site
52 ha
Site proposed by
Municipality of Oslo
Winner (12,000 euros), Runner-up (6,000 euros) and Special Mention (no reward)


Submitted projects