National Tourist Route Trollstigen

The Trollstigen plateau is perched within a dramatic pass between the deep fjords that characterise Norway. The site can only be visited and constructed in summer, due to severe winter weather. Despite the inaccessible nature of the site, the project entailed designing an entire visitor environment including a mountain lodge with restaurant and gallery, flood barriers, water cascades, bridges, paths, outdoor furniture and platforms — all moulded into the landscape for the visitor’s experience of the place to seem even more intimate. The architectural intervention is respectfully delicate, and was conceived as a thin thread that guides visitors from one stunning overlook to another.

Trollstigen is a robust facility, dimensioned for durability with minimal maintenance and large static stresses. The major contrast between the seasons has been handled with the choice of materials. The area receives up to seven metres of snow during winter, placing extreme demands on static strength. However, the structures and details were designed to withstand the extreme stress without compromising on the visual slenderness.

A clear and precise transition between the architecture and the natural landscape was the basis for the design concept. Therefore, cast-in-place concrete and Corten steel were carefully chosen to be the main materials. The steel oxidises and gains its own patina over time. The concrete has been treated with several different techniques and with the nuances these treatments give the material, it is possible to address each micro-context in relation to their respective use and placement.
The architectural project is very comprehensive in terms of the complex programme and its scale: the site covers an area of approximately 600,000 m², with the visitor centre measuring some 1,800 m². Likewise, the project’s environmental strategy encompasses its construction footprint: high durability and sustainability of materials and products.