// urban research project // scarcity and creativity in the built environment // scibe workshop // group project
The Úlfarsárdalur area has a current population of 259 people. The construction
process stopped when Iceland went into recession in the year
2008 and not much has happened there since.
The areas of Úlfarsárdalur and Grafarholt are separated heavily with
traffic veins, which have an even deeper effect of cutting the community
apart. This and the everlasting atmosphere of construction and halffinished
housing makes for an undesirable ghost-town.
Overlooking its situation, the area around Úlfarsfell does have great
potential. It is large, quite fertile and a river runs from nearby Hafravatn
through it, which offers strong connections to the greater area.
Sunlight hits the fertile grounds throughout the year and despite the
overhanging mountain the area stays relatively bright. Wind strikes primarily
from the East and provides great gliding conditions overhanging
from the mountain.
With the water, the mountain, available outdoor activities and the fertile
land we construct a scheme to improve the area for both its inhabitants
The now empty and obsolete Bauhaus warehouse is at the center of our
transport scheme. People from outside the neighbourhood can park
their cars there and borrow bicycles, skates and skateboards, kayaks
and canoes to travel on into our Úlfarsárgarður recreational area. There
are plenty of activities within the area to attract people. Locals can slowcommute
to Bauhaus and from there take a bus or borrow a car, running
on methane of course. New paths are added to an existing network of
bicycle and hiking paths in the area and new connections made between
neighbourhoods and to the marketplace.
Our food network scheme is an enclosed eco-circle which wastes very
little and has a small carbon footprint. Farms cultivate their crops in
Úlfarsárdalur and around Úlfarsfell. Aquaponic cultivation, fish farming
and greenhouses are situated around Hafravatn where greenhouse fruits
and vegetables are grown. Produce is then transported along the river
and picked up at markets belonging to each neighbourhood. Food waste
is sent to a methane processing plant which fuels fast transportation
system. Compost from the production is then used as fertilizer and
fodder for the farms and the circle is complete.
Our proposal tackles the current neighbourhood situation from the bottom
up. We devised a plan to turn certain abandonded lots and buildings into
shared spaces. With this we hope to unify and encourage locals to carry
on the construction.
In a community center people get together to share tools and knowledge.
Another vacant building holds the communal kitchen. The children can
enjoy a small farming area and play around animals and grow vegetables
after school. Therefore, while constructing, people can assist each other
with daily cooking, taking care of children and building – make life easier.
Implementing these schemes forms a closely knit network where a society
encouraging a healthy and socially active lifestyle is formed.
We furthermore hope these efforts make the area attractive and desirable
to more people.