Timeless in the garden city

Timeless in the garden city

Developing new buildings in venerable Bromma Garden City requires careful consideration and thought. In a successful wood construction project, four new apartment buildings have been created, carefully balancing past and present.

Over the years, many residential dreams have come true in Bromma Garden City. Built more than 100 years ago, the neighbourhood is highly sought-after - as friendly and idyllic as its name suggests.

However, chances of moving there have been limited, as the supply of housing has not matched demand. In a unique project, developer Nordr built 42 new apartments in the early 2020s, ranging in size from one to four bedrooms.

“Interest in living in this new development has been enormous. Of course the area is attractive, but people also seem keen to live in wooden homes. We’ve focused on high quality in the apartments, which come in different sizes and layouts,” says Ronnie Edberg, project manager at Nordr.



The blocks have been designed to blend in with the other buildings in the area and the natural setting.

With colours in three different shades of green
, the four new blocks blend gently into the small woodland situated behind the development. In total, the project consists of four buildings, one long and three slightly shorter – all with timber frames, cladding and facades. Wood was a natural choice of material for several reasons, says architect Stefan Forslund of Forslunds Arkitekter.

“We wanted to create architecture with a clear connection to the area, harmonising with the surroundings in both scale and form. Wood enhances the feeling of nature and many existing houses in the area are built of wood. The choice of wood gave us the opportunity to create a contemporary design in harmony with the environment,” explains Stefan.

Once the decision to build in wood was made, various options were explored. It soon became clear that cross-laminated timber was the best solution, partly because of the buildings’ rather specific angles, free forms and attic apartments. The blocks were also built on site, facilitated by the prefabricated, bespoke elements that were quickly and easily assembled.

Ronnie Edberg reports a positive response to the homes, and he and his colleagues at Nordr are more than happy with the finished result. However, he urges reflection on the challenges of acoustics in wooden buildings, such as tolerance of creaking or soundproofing issues.

“It’s clear that many people enjoy wooden housing and the more we build in wood, the better we get at it. Over time, however, high standards have evolved for our living environments and we prefer things to be dead quiet, even in multi-occupancy dwellings. It’s an equation that doesn’t add up – wood is a living material and stairs built in wood must be allowed to creak. What is called charm in an old building has to also be acceptable in newly built houses,” says Ronnie.

Occupants began moving in during the autumn and winter of 2022. The residen-tial buildings are similar to the existing buildings, but with a more modern design to meet today’s expectations and demands. Balconies and patios are more taken for granted than they once were, and the apartments also have much larger windows to bring in the desired amount of light. The primary task of the project was to find the balance between past and present, according to Stefan Forslund.

"It's a century since the area first took shape and the aim was to create a sense of continuity in this urban space. Äppelviken has a special character. It's a much-loved, beautiful and historic place with a feeling that we wanted to preserve. This was our starting point and we feel we've succeeded", smiles Stefan.

Text: Marie Karlsson
Photo: Erik Thor


Published: 2024-01-25

About the project

Project: Bromma Garden City
Comprices: 42 apartments
Location: Äppelviken, Bromma
Built in: 2022
Gross area: 4,667 m2
Developer: Nordr
Architect: Forslunds Arkitekter, Stefan Forslund lead architect, Anna Grundmark managing architect
Structural engineer: Limträteknik i Falun AB
Frame: CLT
Building contractor: Veidekke
Building material: Wood


Timber frames

In total, Setra has delivered 1,400 cubic metres of CLT to Bromma Garden City.

In addition to the CLT, 60 cubic metres of glulam were delivered for the balconies and external stairs. Setra was also commissioned to produce internal staircases, which were sawn from 300-millimetre-thick CLT panels.

“The choice of wood gave the opportunity to create a contemporary design”

Stefan Forslund, architect, Forslunds Arkitekter

Stefan Forslund,
Architect at Forslunds arkitekter

Ronnie Edberg,
Project manager at Nordr

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