Learnings from Borlänge

Train Station Barry Alexander Morton More

My railway station design draws heavily on the work of Gunnar Asplund, and a little more unusually, Sir Edwin Lutyens. I was interested in playing with scale and introducing an element of surprise into the spatial experience of the building.

This is demonstrated externally in the way the bulk of the building is reduced by sweeping the roof down to reduce the height of the walls to provide a relatively modest exterior which also importantly relates to the scale of the neighbouring buildings. However, upon passing through the compressed low height entry the interior offers a great sense of spatial relief and surprise with is soaring barrel vaulted ceiling punctuated with crisply placed vertical glazed dormer windows. 

Stylistically there are also some games at play. The exterior with its heavy and dominant slate clad roof and stone harled walls and simply detailed colonnade (directly borrowed from Asplund’s Woodland Chapel) has a rustic, romantic, Swedish vernacular quality .The interior is by comparison a sophisticated, slightly cold and detached essay in pared back classicism with the interior spaces formally connected enfilade.

I was also conscious that the station needed to provide a sense of civic gravitas and this is most notably conveyed through the clock tower. I was initially a little tentative in respect of the scale of this feature and it was something that I did struggle with in refining the composition of the exterior.

Lastly I wanted the building, which is situated on the edge of a sweeping park, to act a hortus conclusus to terminate and enclose the space. Accordingly the elevation facing the park is treated as a covered opened wall loggia surmounted by a simply hipped roof. This also allows for it to function as an eye-catcher on the rising ground when viewed from the town centre.