Den Blå Planet: A vortex with 7 million liters of water


Photo: Adam Mørk - 3XN

The National Aquarium Denmark on the Øresund coast leads visitors deep under the surface of the sea in a spectacular building whose design was inspired by the movement of water.

On the coast of Amager Strand is The Blue Planet, a spectacular building shaped like a giant whirlpool, which houses Copenhagen’s new aquarium.

Approching it, visitors have the feeling of being sucked down under the surface of the sea and from the entrance they proceed to the centre of the whirl: the round foyer. There the ceiling is made of glass, making the visitors feel as if they’re looking up through the bottom of a basin. Daylight is reflected by the water and creates a flickering of dots of light across the room.

Five ‘tentacles’ lead the way to 53 aquariums

From the foyer, five ‘tentacles’ radiate outwards, each housing a different division of the aquarium and all kinds of exotic underwater creatures in cold, warm, salty and fresh surroundings. It’s a design that allows visitors to choose their own path through The Blue Planet.

Far from a sustainable beacon

Its complex geometry and organic expression made it somewhat of a construction puzzle to build. The building consists of a steel frame clad with sheets of aluminium, all with the same dimensions.

Covering an area of 9,000m2, and with aquarium technology operating 24 hours a day, The Blue Planet is not exactly a leading light in sustainability. Nevertheless, engineers have done their best to create solutions that reduce energy consumption quite considerably, including seawater cooling, insulation and low-energy windows.

Near The Blue Planet

The area around Øresund is beautiful. Take a walk along the sea from The Blue Planet. First, you can enjoy the ships docked at Kastrup Marina. At the seashell shaped Kastrup Sea Bath, you can take a dip in the water, just as you can at Amager Beach Park. Finally, you can conclude your walk at The Maritime Youth House, one of the early buildings designed by Bjarke Ingels and his then-partner Julien de Smidt in their studio, PLOT.






Den Blå Planet
Knud Højgaards Fond
Taarnby Municipality