JAJA Architects are a Danish architecture and design firm based in Copenhagen, Denmark. JAJA which means, “yes, yes” in German represents their ideology which is an approach that explores every possibility in the field of architecture. They explore, understand, break the problem into parameters and give a solution that can benefit both the community, user, and the site itself. They specialize in Mobility, Preservation, and Biomaterials which according to them can create architecture that makes a difference.

1. Park N Play

Size- 2400m2 rooftop + 4800m2 façade
Location- Nordhavn, Copenhagen, Denmark

The design for the façade and rooftop landscape of an 8-floor central parking facility overlooking the Copenhagen harbor was won by JAJA architects. The design integrates the structure with the city using warm red colors found in the neighboring buildings. Planters are placed rhythmically on all sides of the façade accentuating the structural grid. Staircase with a red handrail on the façade takes the user by hand along the frieze depicting the history of the harbor to the rooftop public space where it integrates itself into a series of play equipment along the twisting of rail.

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The fresco on left and the red looping rail on right ©www.ja-ja.dk
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The fresco on left and the red looping rail on right ©www.ja-ja.dk
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The fresco on left and the red looping rail on right ©www.ja-ja.dk

2. Sydhavn Church

Size- 2500 m2
Location- Sydhavn, Copenhagen, Denmark

The Sydhavn church is an inclusive design where communal gathering space, spiritual space, and nature is brought together in one upward-moving geometric spiral structure. The nave of the church is separated by placing it above the public area which allows both functions together. The upward-moving spiral colonnade has water trickling down in a series of water gardens creating a sensory and spiritual appeal for the place. This trickling of water transforms into a cascade of falls during rain offering new ways to experience its architecture. The shadow play of concrete colonnades brings a depth to the structure.

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Sydhavn Church ©www.ja-ja.dk
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Sydhavn Church ©www.ja-ja.dk
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Sydhavn Church ©www.ja-ja.dk
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Sydhavn Church ©www.ja-ja.dk
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Sydhavn Church ©www.ja-ja.dk

3. Rubjerg Knude Lighthouse

Size- 40 m2
Location- Rubjerg Knude Fyr, Hjørring, Denmark

Architectural intervention in the interior of the structure led to the rebirth of the solitary lighthouse. The original façade of the structure is kept intact but as soon as the visitor steps inside an array of kaleidoscopic rays fill the central shaft. A poetic interpretation of the light of the lighthouse, the installation made of different types of steel reflects the light inside the shaft creating a kaleidoscopic pattern on the floor as it gets rotated by natural forces. One gets to experience the former glory of the structure by climbing the perforated steel stair along the shaft to reach the top.

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4. Game Streetmekka Aalborg

Size- 2500 m2
Location- Aalborg, Denmark

The former laboratory building was redesigned into a sports and street play arena inside the structure while keeping the industrial façade intact. The 2500 m2 plot area is designed to be a melting pot for various activities such as swinging, climbing, street basketball, and soccer. One can also linger into the side wing where labs are transformed into workshop spaces or hang out in the various interesting resting areas in the arena.

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5. Parking House Ejler Bille

Size- 17000 m2
Location- Ørstad, Copenhagen, Denmark

With an approach to transform the exterior of a parking structure from being just functional necessities for cars to making it aesthetic for people and our urban environment. The design creates a dynamic façade using steel and brick to create perforations of varying sizes which increases from bottom to top as it tries to divide the structure into smaller volumes. In time vines planted in between will grow and cover the façade creating a contrast between the façade and its organic element.

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6. Struenseegade Transformation

Location- Copenhagen, Denmark

In association with the Copenhagen Municipality, Region Hovedstaden, and the Alexandra Institute, JAJA architects proposed for the transformation of Nørrebro’s street into urban landscape areas. It aims at generating more green spaces by using the parking bays of the public and giving them free mobility passes for public transport. The project includes planting new trees, widening public pathways, creating new social spaces, and balconies for ground floor residents.

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7. Kimbrer Pavilion Aars

Location- Aars, Denmark

The Kimbrer pavilion acts as an attractive gathering place for visitors. The design links together the city’s culture and business life to the surrounding and especially the Kimbrer square. It’s an open pavilion whose function changes according to the need by pulling the transparent curtains. The columns support the roof made with wooden struts and locally sourced tiles.

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8. VRÅ School

Size- 9600 m2
Location- Vra, Denmark

The school is designed with a prime focus on the spatial experience of the user with the architecture and the forest. It forms an interactive and evolving forest in and around the structure where students can learn and do various recreational activities. Different departments come together under one wooden canopy which has two large courtyards with forest.

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9. Ålesund Harborfront

Size- +25 hec
Location- Ålesund, Denmark

The project Sundbyen is a master plan developed for redesigning of Ålesund Harborfront. It takes advantage of the harbor to create urban pockets where citizens can interact with water. It respects the surrounding city’s urban fabric of roads, cultures, and its identity and tries to connect to it. Most of the design is around the harbor with some having courtyards to protect from harsh winds.

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10. Grenna Sports And Recreational Centre

Size- 2500 m2
Location-Grenaa, Denmark

The extension designed for the existing Grenaa sports center acts as a buffer between the interior and the exterior. It allows the spaces of various volumes to flow and merge into each other by using glass as a primary material. The sloping roof is the primary architectural gesture for the existing building.

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11. Almenbolig+ 

Size- +400 units between 80-100 sqm
Location- Eight different locations in and around Copenhagen

Almenbolig+ is a low-cost housing concept proposed by JAJA architects. The scheme is based on standardized plans which can be combined, differentiated, or variated to construct large scale building blocks, colonies, landscape areas, etc. 400 of these units have already been constructed in 8 locations in Copenhagen.

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12. Wooden Parking House And Mobility Hub

Size- 19,300 m2
Location-Aarhus, Denmark

The compact design of the structure uses cross-laminated timber and vertical gardens to decrease the carbon footprint. The parking house contains 2000 m2 of commercial space distributed over balconies, pavilions, and on the first two floors. It facilitates green transport facilities on the ground floor as well as an open park whose pathways and landscape flow seamlessly onto the structure as a staircase and vertical gardens. Through diverse functions, it creates an active, interactive, and attractive hub in the growing neighborhood.

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13. Glyngore Fjord House

Size- 250 m2
Location- Glyngore, Denmark

The Fjord house is a recreational hub consisting of a diving tower, sauna, submerged auditorium, and kayak piers located on the embankment separating the wild waters of Limfjord and the calm marina. To signify this contrast JAJA architects used concrete to depict the wild side as it allows visitors to experience the water upfront and used wood for a calmer, much open side which faces the marina.

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14. Nyborg Castle

Size- 2500 m2
Location-Nyborg, Denmark

The design for restoration and extension of Nyborg castle won by JAJA architects consists of building a new contemporary visitors center that respects the historic context of the site and creates a relationship with the old and the new. The historic ring wall which united different sections of the castle will be reestablished using wood and brick walls.

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15. Harboøre Activity Landscape

Size- 2000 m2
Location- Harboøre, Denmark

The design of activity landscapes challenges the conventional design practices by providing a space that allows a seamless transition of activities from inside to outside and vice versa. The openness of the design essentially makes it a community space where people of all ages can come and interact together. The use of undulating hills of grass, asphalt, and concrete opens up a wide range of activities to do.

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Author

Nitin Mhapsekar is currently pursuing his undergraduate degree in Architecture. He is upskilling and trying different possibilities for his career. He loves travelling and going on adventures as well as using his leisure time to read fictions, cook and research.

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