A ground view of an apartment complex with a grey and orange facade.

Fittja People’s Palace – renovation for the people

NCC has worked with Spridd architectural practice to develop Fittja People’s Palace specifically for the renovation of homes built in the 1960s and 70s as part of the Million Program public housing project. This is a concept that respects the residents’ interests while at the same time providing simple and practical solutions to the renovation needs. The concept won first prize in the Swedish part of the Nordic Built Challenge.

Fittja People’s Palace is part of NCC’s total concept for Sustainable Renovation. NCC and Spridd have worked to create a concept that is economically, socially and environmentally sustainable. A key cornerstone of this is that residents and other local stakeholders have influence over the renovations, which are to be carried out via a carefully constructed collaborative process. The aim is for the collaborative process to result in a solution that is economically sustainable for the residents. NCC has considerable experience in running collaborative projects and sees this concept as an extension of NCC’s partnering model.

The framework agreement is valid for six to eight years and is valued at around SEK 1 billion.

Renovation for the people

Happy tenants are a good sign of a successful renovation. However, this requires a solution that is rooted in the circumstances of the people who live and spend time in the area. With Fittja People’s Palace, we have drawn on knowledge from both social surveys and planning programs for the area. By using existing surveys, we can also move the process more quickly towards the end goal – happy tenants.

We see gathering information from local stakeholders and creating social engagement as important parameters for a successful result. The renovation project makes use of local skills through apprentice programs (NCC job school) and improvements are made to the immediate vicinity to increase safety and security and establish a pleasant environment in which to spend time.

Three renovation packages

The concept contains three alternative renovation packages: small, medium and large. The packages have been developed based on the most common renovation needs in the Million Program housing relating to factors such as age and architectural design. The smallest package involves a rent rise of only 10 percent, while the largest entails a rent rise of 25 percent. It should be pointed out that the packages are not fixed. They are merely intended to give an indication of cost levels and energy savings. The decisions on what renovations to carry out are taken within the framework of each specific project.

Energy efficiency, recycling and community

An environmentally sustainable renovation naturally involves finding technical ways to achieve the best possible energy efficiency in the property. But it is also about recycling materials instead of discarding them and buying new replacements. Many of the Million Program buildings are made from robust, quality materials and we are considering the opportunities to make use of the value in existing materials.

Another aspect that we want to encourage is more collective solutions, which strengthen cohesion and responsibility within the local community. Within our concept, we examine the possibility of having shared tool stores, laundry rooms and community gardens, for example.

About the Nordic Built Challenge

The Nordic Built Challenge was an open, interdisciplinary design competition for the renovation of an existing building in each Nordic country. The purpose of the competition was to stimulate innovation and the development of sustainable, viable and scalable renovation concepts for the most common building types in the Nordic region. The five winners of the Nordic Built Challenge received a consultancy agreement with the property owners and the opportunity to realize their projects. In addition, they were entered into the competition for the Nordic Built Challenge Award and a prize of NOK 1 million. The Nordic Built Challenge was part of the Nordic Built initiative, which was run by Nordic Innovation over the period 2012–2014. For further information: http://www.nordicbuilt.org

Jury statement: “Fittja People’s Palace as a whole has managed to balance the desire for modernization and energy efficiency with respect for the residents’ finances, effective use of the planet’s resources and consideration for the cultural history of the area.”

Watch the movie about the concept "Fittjas People Palace":

Madeleine Nobs

Manager Sustainable refurbishment, NCC Building Sweden