The new Wadden Sea Centre by Dorte Mandrup Architects, Ribe, Denmark


Dorte Mandrup Architects new stunning and sleek Wadden Sea Centre in Vester Vedsted opened to the public early February 2017. The contemporary building is a great and imaginative Nordic example of a crisp and progressive yet sensitive rural architecture that enhances the landscape and nature encounter.

Located in the South Western part of Jutland; Denmark, The Wadden Sea is Denmark’s largest National park and appointed World Heritage by UNESCO.

The Wadden Sea is the largest unbroken system of intertidal sand and mud flats in the world. The site covers the Dutch Wadden Sea Conservation Area, the German Wadden Sea National Parks of Lower Saxony and Schleswig-Holstein, and most of the Danish Wadden Sea maritime conservation area. It is a large, temperate, relatively flat and dynamic coastal wetland environment, formed by the intricate interactions between physical and biological factors that have given rise to a multitude of transitional habitats with tidal channels, sandy shoals, sea-grass meadows, mussel and oyster beds, sandbars, mudflats, salt marshes, estuaries, beaches and dunes. The area is home to numerous plant and animal species, including marine mammals such as the harbour seal, grey seal and harbour porpoise. The Wadden Sea is one of the last remaining large-scale, intertidal ecosystems in the world where natural processes continue to function largely undisturbed. In spring and autumn around 12- 15 million migratory birds pass through the Wadden Sea National Park to fourage en route to breeding and wintering grounds around the world.

The new exhibition and didactic information centre will take visitors below the surface and into the skies of this remarkable tidal flatland eco-system and convey understanding of its global importance. Apart from presenting and introducing guests to the natural splendour of the Wadden Sea the centre also offers a wide range of  ranger-guided nature walks and safaris that will bring you closer to nature and landscape and enrich your experience in the National Park.

Dorte Mandrup Architects from Aarhus has sensitively conceived a modern low-lying building complex very much in touch and in harmony with the landscape. At the same time, the sleek building interprets and progresses the Wadden Sea regions traditional rural building tradition and typology. The building with its uninterrupted reed thatched roof and walls underlines the tactile qualities and robustness that can be found in traditional crafts and the materials of the region.

Vadehavscentret, Okholmvej 5, Vester Vedsted • 6760 Ribe • Denmark
Opens 3. February 2017

Photos by Colin Seymour and renderings by Dorte Mandrup Aktitekter

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The build coming close to an end November 2016



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