Copenhagen’s most famous tower to get a makeover

Rådhustårnet, all 105 metres of it, will be clad in scaffolding until at least the end of the year

Anyone passing through the centre of town over the next few days might notice an unfamiliar sight, or rather the lack of a familiar one.

Rådhustårnet, arguably Copenhagen’s most recognisable tower, will be clad in scaffolding until at least the end of the year.

City Hall’s tower has to undergo renovations to ensure it can withstand the howling Danish wind for the next few decades.

“Copenhagen City Hall is a large part of the city’s identity and soul – all Copenhageners have a relationship with the building,” said Sophie Hæstorp Andersen, the mayor of Copenhagen.

“We must protect that. It is important that we take good care of the town hall, so we ensure the city we pass on to our children and grandchildren can tell our shared history.”

Fantasy tower
Anyone grieving that they can’t see their beloved tower for another year should be consoled: thanks to the Royal Academy you won’t miss a thing.

The scaffolding will be covered with a massive depiction of the 105-metre tower. The Royal Academy held a competition encouraging students to submit their design proposals.

Anne Marie Stahl and Nikolaj Exner Carstens won with their image of a three-pillared tower, which will adorn Rådhustårnet for the next 12 months.

The two Royal Academy students said their design was inspired by “nature, history and the everyday”.

Copenhagen’s Rådhus was completed in 1905. Designed by architect Martin Nyrop, it is inspired by Siena’s mediaeval Palazzo Pubblico.

The current Rådhus is the city’s sixth town hall. Old Rådus locations include Gammeltorv, Nytorv, and the corner between Nørregade and Studiestræde.

Copenhagen’s third Rådhus burned down in the Great Fire of Copenhagen in 1728, which raged for more than two days and destroyed almost half of the city centre.

The fifth Rådhus, replaced by the current one, still stands today on Nytorv and now serves as the Court of the City of Copenhagen.