Rodeløkken Maskinverksted

Nov 2009 | Early Projects

Rodeløkkens Maskinverksted’s new building at Alnabru, photo from 1955 (Industrimuseum)

Diploma project 1988

Birger Sevaldson

Rodeløkken Maskinverksted is a metal factory. In the project a redesign of all operating levels of the company was suggested on the basis of economic issues, future market opportunities, utilising the property as a resource for rental which also would enrich the social milieu, other social considerations, like the relation between management and floor staff, built-in flexibility for future adaptation and uncertainties.

The project juggled all these issues simultaneously until after an incubation time things simultaneously and synergetic fell in place. The investigation included a large number of visits and open-ended conversations with all levels in the organisation. It also included sketching sessions to internalise the place. Exactly measuring and drafting the whole interior and production floor immensely helped to internalise.

For addressing issues of flexibility in the office department a simple geometric system was developed. Cutting one corner of the offices and combining this with office furniture with a 45-degree angle allowed for many different plan solutions. The 45-degree structure allowed for all sorts of service spaces adjacent to offices and meeting rooms. The function of these spaces could easily be changed without violating the overall structure.

Though this project at that time never was considered being a systems thinking project it truly is. It is soft systems thinking and was the first inspiration to what years later become systems oriented design.