There is something informal about the large, lively plaza behind the Torvehallerne marketplace. The area caters to a school as well as to the urban street culture, while in the summer months it is a popular hangout for children and adults alike.
In 2014, Copenhageners finally welcomed the enticingly revitalised Israels Plads as an informal meeting point. The plaza includes space to play and street sports facilities like a skating area, a ball cage and performance space. Historically, the plaza was a vibrant market place called Grønttorvet, but between the 1950s and this profound renovation, it was a desolate, neglected piece of asphalt used for parking space and the occasional flea market. Its modernisation honours the liveliness of the old Israels Plads in a manner that is aesthetic and functional, yet also artistically sculptural.
Reminiscent of a flying carpet, the light granite surface of Israels Plads is elevated from the street, hovering over the car park that is now placed discreetly under ground. Traffic has been replaced with facilities that invite activity and generate social opportunities for all. And, with the plaza just across from Torvehallerne marketplace and Nørreport Station, there are always people around.
Sculptor Morten Stræde’s manmade, fountain-studded watercourse flows through the space, beautifully bridging Israels Plads with Ørsted’s Park. In its entity, the square invites you to take a seat on the rounded bench formations amongst its organic pattern of trees, and look at and feel life unfolding at the heart of the city.