CopenHill: A Plan(t) For The Future – The Beauty in the Beast #2
For the second episode of "The Beauty in the Beast" campaign, we fly to Copenhagen to go skiing on a Waste-to-Energy plant...and much more!
Click here to discover “The Beauty in the Beast” campaign!
A cosy living room, a small garden covered in snow, and plenty of time to spend with your loved ones sipping a cup of coffee. Or else an afternoon bike ride ending with a picnic at a park, while watching the sun go down surrounded by friends. Whatever you prefer – at home or out and about through the city – this is hygge: the Danish word that describes the feeling of happiness one can get thanks to the atmosphere and environment surrounding them, anywhere, anytime, and with anyone.
And speaking of unexpected places where hygge can happen, the city of Copenhagen hosts one of them: CopenHill, an atypical construction in the middle of the city, noticeable even by the most distracted pedestrian in the streets, and featuring some original characteristics.
A peculiar escape for city people
CopenHill (also known as Amager Bakke) was put in operation in 2017, redesigning the skyline of the city of Copenhagen.
Replacing the former 50-year old municipal waste management plant, it manages the non-recyclable waste of approximately 645,000 people and about 68,000 companies from Copenhagen and 4 other surrounding municipalities. In return, it provides electricity to 80.000 households and district heating to 90,000 apartments. But while its concrete heart is treating waste to supply the city, a lot more happens in the building.
As the name suggests, the plant looks like a small mountain in the otherwise flat Copenhagen landscape, standing out in the city’s background with its over 100m of height. But it is not only the looks; CopenHill resembles a mountain in other ways too, with features one would expect to find more in a village in the Alps rather than in an urbanised capital.
Indeed, it is possible to find a winter wonderland on Amager Bakke’s rooftop: a skiing dry slope was built on the top of the plant. This unusual leisure option for a city is very much appreciated by Copenhagen inhabitants and tourists alike – some of which even buy a year-long pass, taking advantage of the fact that skiing is possible in all seasons, with or without snow.
Just like in a real mountain, CopenHill also provides options for summer activities: the entire rooftop is covered with trees and plants that one could find on a mountain, in particular vegetation that is native to 100m of altitude – which creates an interesting surrounding for a hike. And for those who dare, one more surprise: CopenHill indeed hosts the tallest climbing wall of the world, with 80m of height. So either you are a skier, a hiker, or a climber in Copenhagen, be sure you can have your hilly escape just a metro or bus ride away.
CopenHill has managed to make something unique happen: offering activities that would otherwise not be possible in the city, setting the scene for sociable and fun hygge moments for its visitors while at the same moment treating its non-recyclable waste.