This was a group work for an architect contest called “120 Hours” (because it lasts for just 120 hours) in 2015, that got a honorable mention. The topic was an abandoned town in a breathtaking location on Norway’s shore, and the challenge was: how do we preserve it, and how can we rethink architectural preservation as a whole?
The town of Pyramiden is a dream town gone ghost town. It was bought by Soviet Russia in 1926 and become a coal-mining town after the WWII. Multiple coal miner families had come here to build the future and raise their children in it. The architecture reflects the socialist ideals of the time, and their readiness to combat the nature. The town’s life was interrupted in 1998, when it was promptly evacuated and abandoned. The cold had conserved it well, so up to now it stays untouched, with furniture in place and plants slightly withered.
The question was: how should we preserve Pyramiden? Our answer was: we shouldn’t. Dreams are bound to deteriorate, but the memories are still dear to us.
Instead, we proposed a structure that would mark the spot, making it visible even from the space. It would allow the visitors to experience the place without further ruining it or taking safety risks.
It was in a great deal inspired by A Sound of Thunder by Ray Bradbury (this is where “the butterfly effect” term is born).