ObelHus. C.F. Møller. Photo: C.F. Møller Architects


Transformation of a former tobacco factory building from 1936 by architect Preben Hansen, converting the industrial building into modern homes with respect for and preservation of the building's cultural-historical values.
 ObelHus. C.F. Møller. Photo: C.F. Møller Architects


C.W Obel Ejendomme


Aalborg, Denmark


6,300 m²




HP Byg


Brix & Kamp


C.F. Møller Architects

C.W. Obel's comprehensive building complex, which served as a tobacco factory in Aalborg, has roots dating back to 1898. The complex structure, constructed in multiple phases on Strandvejen, has previously housed offices and classrooms.

The significant preserved architecture and industrial heritage served as both inspiration and challenge. The challenge lay particularly in transforming distinct, industrially influenced spaces into contemporary homes, while preserving the sense of history and industrial heritage. The homes are designed with respect for the characteristic features of the existing building structure, seen in the facade's grid system, consisting of columns and beams, and large window sections. A variety of housing types, from smaller apartments at 52 m2 to larger homes up to 112 m2 on multiple levels, ensure diversity. The top apartments are unique in terms of daylight dispersed from the skylights inherent in the building.

A shared rooftop terrace strengthens the sense of community among residents and offers panoramic views of Limfjorden and the city's towers. Balconies have been added with lightweight steel constructions, adding depth and a new dimension to the facade but with respect for the building's aesthetics. The change in materials tells the house's story, while colours, window proportions, and facade rhythm are preserved. The existing raw structure is insulated to comply with BR18 requirements.

High degree of recycling

The project is marked by a high degree of recycling, reusing not only the raw structure but also older building elements such as ceiling slabs and doors. ObelHus is the first Nordic Eco Swan-labelled project in North Jutland, as all new materials meet high environmental standards. Preserving cultural-historical elements also points towards cultural sustainability by ensuring that the city's heritage lives on in a new form.

The project's balance between renovation and preservation has thus been crucial. By preserving and reanimating cultural-historical elements, ObelHus creates a harmonious synthesis between the past and present, where the old industrial building's soul remains intact in a modern residential environment.

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