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Anna Alsborger
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Akademiska Hus celebrates opening of new student housing in central Gothenburg

Monday, 2 October 2023

Studentbostäder i Språkskrapan.

A total of 61 apartments with room for approximately 125 undergraduate and graduate students are now ready for occupancy in the Näckrosen area in Gothenburg. Akademiska Hus has converted a former office building into long-awaited campus-based housing in the middle of the city with a focus on coliving and sustainable solutions for a greatly reduced carbon footprint.

The “Språkskrapan” building was built in the 1960s and Akademiska Hus has now transformed it into modern housing for international undergraduate and graduate students at the University of Gothenburg. The building is located in the Näckrosen area by the park Renströmsparken between Götaplatsen and Korsvägen.

“The housing will be an important contribution to reduce the ongoing student housing shortage in the city, as a result of which Gothenburg was recently red-listed in the annual report of the Swedish National Union of Students with respect to the housing situation for Sweden’s students. With more housing we also help to make the Näckrosen campus more vibrant and safer at all hours of the day,” says Anna Alsborger, facilities manager at Akademiska Hus.

Akademiska Hus has invested a total of approximately SEK 110 million in the new housing, which will be rented out as a block by the University of Gothenburg.

“The housing units will be filled with undergraduate and graduate students from all over the world. The Språkskrapan housing initiative is essential for us to be able to recruit international undergraduate and graduate students and is therefore an important component of the university’s internationalisation efforts. We also hope that this new housing format will promote interaction among the residents,” says Karin Hellqvist, head of Welcome Services at the University of Gothenburg.

From one-bedroom apartments to coliving

Språkskrapan consists of two buildings with a common stairwell. There are classic one- and two-bedroom student apartments, as well as larger apartments in line with the coliving student housing concept that Akademiska Hus has developed. Five to six people can live in these apartments, each with their own bedroom, but with a shared kitchen, living room and bathroom.

“Sharing housing offers many benefits, such as increased social interaction and reduced loneliness, which many students may experience when moving to a new city. Coliving is also advantageous from a sustainability perspective, allowing more efficient use of spaces and functions,” says Linda Teng, concept manager for Academic Living.


Renovation, recycling and solar panels for a smaller carbon footprint

To create housing that is as climate-smart as possible, Akademiska Hus has built the student residences in an existing building. Preliminary calculations show that by remodelling Språkskrapan, Akademiska Hus has generated a lower carbon footprint of about 1,000 tonnes carbon dioxide equivalents (CO2e) compared with new construction.

Many of the existing materials from when the building was an office have been reused, including window sills, doors and light fixtures. The exterior of the building features recycled plants and granite stone taken from other Akademiska Hus construction projects, while used azobe wood previously used in the now demolished pedestrian bridge linking Nordstan and Lilla Bommen in Gothenburg was purchased for the terrace and outdoor furniture.

Språkskrapan has also been equipped with rooftop solar panels. The facility is expected to produce approximately 24,000 kWh of sustainable energy per year and will cover some of the internal electricity needs of the building, such as lighting.