River-Spanning Town Hall Literally Bridges Two Faroe Islands Communities

A pair of island municipalities between Denmark and Iceland in the North Atlantic Ocean has been bridged by a work of architecture and engineering, a town hall that crosses a river below and features a green roof bridge above.

Designed by Henning Larsen Architects of Copenhagen, this new town hall for Norðragøta blends naturally into its surroundings. Despite an angular modern shape, its colors and greenery tie it to surrounding stones and lush grasslands.

The structure is relatively small and thin, as much a bridge as a building, and made to be visited by locals and travelers alike. Inside, tall glazing frames the surrounding landscape and a glass section of floor offers views of the river flowing below.

“A central theme in traditional Faroese architecture is the blurred line between nature and building, the fact that the spectator has difficulties distinguishing where the landscape ends and the building begins,” says designer Ósbjørn Jacobsen.

“The primary conceptual idea behind the design of the town hall is driven by the notion of this fleeting line between landscape and building.” A light and sound installation designed to pair with the structure welcomes visitors to cross it above or enter from below.