Press release | Date: 12/07/2019 | Ministry of Local Government and Modernisation
“Opinions are divided on the new government building complex. There are feelings and views related to the physical reminders of the terrorist attack on 22 July 2011, the history of the area, and how the new government building complex will work in the city. We have therefore chosen to present an update on the work so far. Now the Storting will have the opportunity to voice its opinion on the project,” says Minister of Local Government and Modernisation Monica Mæland.
Almost eight years have passed since the terrorist attack in the government building complex and on the island of Utøya. This is the first time the Storting has been given such a comprehensive description of the work on the new government building complex. The white paper describes the planning phases to date. The report provides an account of the assessments and decisions related to functionalities and workplace design, safety and security, urban environment, and the environment.
The government building complex is a major construction project. It concerns buildings with important symbolic value that will last for generations to come. Rebuilding the government building complex is a massive project that will span several parliamentary terms.
“The government has previously decided to reduce the total floor area, and it has been decided that the construction work should take place in phases. The project is currently in the feasibility study phase. By orienting the Storting now, we are ensuring that the Storting has the opportunity to influence the parameters and design of the project before the final specifications are defined,” says Mæland.
Artworks accessible to all
“We are pleased that we have come up with a good solution for the placement of the murals ‘The Seagull’ and ‘The Fishermen’”, says Mæland. “Priority has been given to making these works of art accessible to everyone who visits the new government building complex. Both works of art will be placed inside the new Building A, with ‘The Fishermen’ facing out towards Einar Gerhardsens plass and ‘The Seagull’ inside the public reception. ‘The seagull’ will be visible from outside,” says Mæland.
Open, safe and green
“We want to build an open, safe, green government building complex that will benefit the city and the people who are going to work there,” says Mæland. The government has attached great importance to safety, security and the environment. The project will meet BREEAM Excellent standards, in terms of environmental efficiency. “We have also ensured a good energy solution for the new government building complex,” says Mæland.
The new building will facilitate collaboration between the ministries in that all of them, except the Ministry of Defence, will be located here. The new buildings shall contribute to the well-being, efficiency and productivity of highly qualified employees. “The goal is to create good workplaces and a good framework for a flexible working environment for the government,” says the Minister of Local Government and Modernisation.
“However, we also need to keep the costs of the reconstruction down. Average floor area per employee must therefore be modest. We are entering a period with a tighter economy, and must also take this into account in connection with the construction of the new government building complex,” says Mæland.
The government will return to proposals regarding the budget and start-up allocation once the feasibility study and quality assurance processes have been completed. This will not be before the national budget for 2021 at the earliest.
The Ministry of Local Government and Modernisation’s press telephone: (+47) 22 24 25 00