The Opal - IDA, The Danish Society of Engineers

Copenhagen harbour was right on the brink of having a new, shiny landmark. Already nicknamed “The Opal” for its reflective and luminary qualities, expectations were high - until it was recently decided that the building would not be completed after all. The proposal has an almost weightless quality that seems to suggest that gravity could somehow cease to exist on this prominent spot at the center of Copenhagen harbour. An intrinsic light design allows for the surface of the building to mirror the play of colours of the water in the harbour – adding a touch of splendor to an otherwise unglamorous part of the harbour.

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The light design is made possible through a visionary design concept developed by Dorte Mandrup and the engineers from Søren Jensen Rådgivende Ingeniører.

According to the Danish Society of Engineers jury, who chose Dorte Mandrup’s design as the winner of the competition in August 2016, the Opal offers a “unique architectural approach for creating a visionary and distinctive new landmark for IDA's headquarters.

The building has great potential to become a focal point for illustrating the symbiosis between the art of engineering and architecture. Both IDA and Copenhagen will benefit greatly from the new addition”.

The design concept allows the building to rest on just four V columns made of steel. The triangular surfaces of the facade alternate between transparent and opaque and the technical textile cladding incorporates LED lights allowing for a spectacular staging of the building at night.

The Opal IDA, The Danish Society of Engineers
The Opal IDA, The Danish Society of Engineers
The Opal IDA, The Danish Society of Engineers