Improving Acoustics in Norway’s Archives

Archive House is a unique building where the historical documents and records of the city of Stavanger and other places are stored and studied. Unusually, the 6600sqm of archive storage area is sited underground and almost equals the 8100sqm of working and public areas above.

Troldtekt Arkivenes Hus Stavanger
Photo: Sindre Ellingsen

Designed by renowned Norwegian architects Lund+Slaatto, the geometrically folded facades are a dramatic puzzle of vertical wooden sections, with the window openings integrated in a pattern of angles. This geometry gives the building a dynamic and playful feel, reminiscent of folded paper and origami. It also means the façade changes appearance due to different play of light and shadows throughout the day.

An important feature of this design is the way that the spaces are organised around a large centrally glazed atrium, together with the main staircase and lifts, canteen, showroom and exhibition space. This means that daylight bathes the inner workplaces with light and creates a bright open area for public functions and a large unifying common room for all the staff and visitors. It also offers great views over the surrounding countryside. 

The stunning interior boasts an attractive ambience comprising bright natural tones with touches of harmonic earth colours. This is reflected in the large areas of ceiling arranged around the interior walls. The ceilings as well as several walls are cladded with Troldtekt and Troldtekt Plus acoustic panels which tie the areas together, absorb noise and create the ideal quiet environment for socialising and work. The focus has been to create intimacy while creating dynamics and flexibility. In this way, the areas can easily be adapted to different events, such as exhibition space, lectures and other purposes. To complement this, the furniture combines custom-designed furniture with loose fixtures, giving a variety of different zones.

Archive House is the first building in the extensive development planned in the southern part of the Ullandhaug park area plan, conceived by Lund+Slaatto architects, where the centerpiece will be the new Stavanger University Hospital.