Kongens Nytov, Copenhagen
This famous square (The Kings New Square) in central Copenhagen, Denmark has for over 350 years been at the cultural heart of the city. Created in 1670 as a place royale, inspired by the France of Louis X111. A large cobbled area surrounded by fine buildings - an early building code ensured that these beautiful properties still stand today and include palaces, embassies and theatres amongst them.
Although intended originally for military purposes, only 18 years later, a central elliptical parterre garden complex (Krinsen) with a statue of King Christian V was inaugurated, surrounded by two rows of trees. In this form the square lasted only 60 years, before being rebuilt again to its original style with some of the trees being transplanted to GavnØ Castle, with some still living there to this day.
Over 100 years later in the mid 1800’s new elms trees were planted around the central area which grew well, and became a major feature of the now busy road system. These had to be finally removed in 1998, having fallen prey to Dutch Elm disease, but were replanted in 2001 – as lime trees this time!
The construction of the new underground railway line, the Cityring, and the connection with the existing station meant that the whole square was closed off for seven years. This major project included reconstructing the whole square in a form as close as possible to the original design. GreenBlue Urban provided Milford with the StrataCell soil cell system, which was installed during 2018-19 below the hard paving, surrounding the central equestrian statue, and providing adequate soil volume for the 80 new lime trees on this impressive development.
Opened to the public early summer 2020, the effect is stunning. The new trees creating a “crown” around the central garden, making this revitalised public realm not only to travel through (the metro rail system station is anticipated to cope with 90,000 passengers by 2025), but an attraction to visit on its own merit. With the square being used for a number of events, from photo exhibitions to graduation parties and even hosting a huge ice rink in the winter, these trees will continue to provide a fantastic backdrop to this historic and beautiful city square for centuries to come.