5 of Copenhagen's greenest buildings

July 30, 2015



Denmark’s capital aims for the ambitious goal of becoming the world's first CO2 neutral capital in 2025. Green and environmentally friendly buildings play an important role in the accomplishment of this goal. For example, worldwide measurements show that energy used by buildings usually represents 40% of a country’s consumption. The innovative design of these buildings is also an opportunity to offer people more enjoyable places to spend their time.


A green building usually aims for energy saving, technologically advanced solutions for management and measurement, livability and a holistic approach. As we were working on some of our cleantech projects, we thought of highlighting Copenhagen’s most sustainable buildings in the short list below.


UN City

Comprising all of the United Nations agencies in Copenhagen, the UN building is one of the world’s greenest buildings. It has platinum LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certificate and has been awarded European Commission's Green Building Award for New Buildings.


UN City uses at least 55% less energy than a similar-sized office building. This is possible due to a number of energy-saving systems adapted to weather conditions or degree of occupation. Furthermore, the roof has been coated with a white, recyclable membrane for energy efficiency, doubled by a sophisticated solar shades system on the building’s façade that reflect the solar heat.

Another green feature are the rainwater capture systems. These reduce the building’s overall water use by over 60% and prevent the risk of flooding. Also, cold water from the sea is used for the cooling system.


The Crystal

Nycredit office building, The Crystal has been built also considering various environmentally friendly characteristics. The low-energy consumption, highly efficient solar panels on the roof and the triple-layer glass façade for effective thermal isolation, make the building a landmark for sustainability. The Z-shape of the floor plan allows all employees to have their office well lit and enjoy the view.


The Mountain

This is one of the most iconic architectural projects in Denmark. It is a state of the art ten-storey building, which incorporates 1/3 apartments and 2/3car parking. The mountain shape is given by the residential apartments, which are built on top of one another in steps, providing each apartment with a green oasis.


Since its completion in 2008, the project has received numerous awards, such as Best Housing Project at the MIPIM International Property Conference in Cannes, the Forum AID Award in Stockholm, and the ArchDaily Building of the Year Award.


'8 House'

The ‘8 House' has been named as one of the most important buildings in the last decade by The Huffington Post. People living in the 476 apartments have their own garden, allocated space for community activities and a biking path, which goes from the street, directly to each apartment’s door.

The architect behind the '8 House' project, Bjarke Ingels won various awards with this building.


The House of Industries

The House of Industries is an office building located downtown whose history dates back to 1872. The 2010 building’s redesign transformed the red-brick building into a glass square, with two extra storeys. The retrofitting made the building greener. The rainwater is now internally stored and reused for maintenance purposes. Solar energy is produced by the built-in solar panels and internal energy is saved-up through small features such as: maximizing natural light, sensor indoor lighting and the use of energy-friendly LED lighting.


Other green aspects of The House of Industries include the natural cooling systems such as the seawater district cooling connection and the building’s especially designed lobby to keep heat away.





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