New design for future substations in Stockholm


Stockholm is to be electrified and the electricity grid is to be expanded. This means more visible electric infrastructure in the city, and Gottlieb Paludan Architects' proposal has been selected as the winner of a design competition for the future substations in the Swedish capital.  

Electricity supply plays a crucial role in the future of Stockholm and Sweden, where industries, transport and growing cities are being electrified to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Sweden is facing a major need to expand and modernise the infrastructure that delivers the electricity. But as the grid expands and takes up more space, it needs to be integrated into the urban landscape in a more thoughtful way.

Design, adaptation to the site and aesthetics were therefore key requirements in the competition for new grid stations, also known as substations, organised by the electricity grid company Ellevio in collaboration with the City of Stockholm and with the support of Architects Sweden. The competition brief included showing how the substations would function at four selected locations in Stockholm. The proposal also had to be capable of being mass-produced and customised for integration with other infrastructure.

Gottlieb Paludan Architects' winning proposal is designed with a modular approach and appears as a discreet technical building. Its flexibility and soft forms can be used in many different configurations and can be naturally integrated into various urban contexts.

From the jury's report: "In the proposal, the jury sees a design that unequivocally communicates a technical building and is linked to a clear design language for this type of function in Stockholm. The building is elegant with a rounded expression that is perceived as urban and can fit well into the many different environments where the new substations will be located".

The competition started with eight participants in August 2022, and four proposals progressed to the next stage, where they developed and deepened their proposals according to the jury's feedback.