Swedish pavilion at Expo 2020 places focus on country's resources

The wood-built structure at the Expo 2020 reportedly follows a 'climate-conscious' methodology, the lead architect said

Swedish pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai
Expo 2020 Dubai
Swedish pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai

The lead architect behind the Swedish Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai, Alessandro Ripellino, has said that the utilisation of a country’s natural resources, via climate-conscious and sustainable means, is vital in design and creation.

Speaking during an interview with the state-run news agency, Wam at the recently-concluded Stockholm Design Week in Sweden, Ripellino said that the structure, 'The Forest' is a ‘zero-energy pavilion’ and the theme will be 'Co-creation for Innovation'.

"The Swedes live with the forest, and in their minds, the forest is very important," the architect explained.

Ripellino, who is an Italian native recollected his first impression of Sweden and told Wam: “Sweden is very different from the rest of Europe in that approximately two-thirds of the land is covered by forest."

Covering a total area of 2,380 square metres, the building structure of the pavilion - which spans 340 square metres - is made entirely of wood.

“I think to build with wood is one of the ways we can work with respect to climate change. It gives us the feeling that something [is being done] for the planet. This is the Swedish way,” Ripellino added.

The lead architect said that, together with the Swedish government, the manifest was decided to create an ‘unusual building’ where no concrete, aluminium or iron is used, except for the screws hold the building elements together.

He also added that apart from fire retardant treatments for the wood, no other chemicals would be used in the construction of the building.

In the last few years, he added, there is an increased focus on climate impact when work is carried out on new projects, which "needs a new way of thinking today, to find the right way."

"A balance between economy, carbon dioxide emissions and materials with the lowest climate impact possible is the overarching goal behind Swedish architectural design. Co-creation is very important for the future, not only for Sweden but for all countries."

This means that the design process factors in societal and environmental impacts in addition to taking in consideration architects, designers, and clients as creators and innovators.

"When we start a new project, we start analysing the history of the place, the flow of people into the place and how it inspires the design of the building," Ripellino explained.

He added that the main challenge during the design and the ongoing construction phase was the short time frame of one year - from winning the design competition to shipping the prefabricated elements - was the main challenge, WAM reported.

Commenting on the construction status of the pavilion, Ripellino said: “A part of the construction is already shipped, and building on the site has started.”

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