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Naturum is the name the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency has had patented for its visitor centres throughout Sweden. On behalf of the Agency, White has designed and shaped several Naturum centres – in fact, this has become something of a speciality over the past decade. We call it “architecture for a client called Nature”.

Naturum Fulufjället is a visitor centre in Dalarna, serving as a gateway to the majestic national park that bears the same name. White was commissioned by the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency to create a beautiful building to function as an entryway to Nature, providing explanations. In addition, the exact position of the Naturum within Fulufjället National Park had be determined. The project also included designing the landscape and the display housed inside the building.

This has resulted in a building that has a weathered, grey face, in the shape of a pair of binoculars with the lenses pointed out over mountains and wetland. White has left Nature as undisturbed as possible in the work it has done on Naturum Fulufjället. The same thing applies to the actual building materials which are designed to age naturally.

The materials have been chosen to allow them to return to the natural cycle of life, leaving no visible traces behind. Indoors, the carpentry work is in birch plywood treated with beeswax, and displays where people can learn about the seasons, cloud types and when the bear comes out of hibernation. The building has two temperature zones in order to minimise maintenance heating requirements during the winters.

Naturum Fulufjället

  • Client: Swedish Environmental Protection Agency
  • Project Start/End: 2001-2003
  • Completed: 2003
  • Cost: Around 12 Million SEK
  • City: Särna
  • Photographer/Illustrator: Luc Pagès

Awards

  • Träpriset (The Wood Award) nominee 2004

Team

  • Gunilla Hagberg
  • Karin Ahlzén
  • Mattias Nordström

Building Type

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