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Home/Pilot Cities/Skellefteå (Sweden)
Skellefteå (Sweden)2021-03-26T14:47:58+01:00

Skellefteå, Sweden

The City

Skellefteå is a city situated along the coast of the Gulf of Bothnia in Northern Sweden, home of approximately 73.000 inhabitants on an area of 6800 square kilometres. Located around 300 kilometers south of the Arctic Circle, Skellefteå has a vibrant mix of sparsely populated countryside and a dense city centre. With a history of entrepreneurship based on forestry and mining, the city has developed into an area where renewable power and the long industrial experience with a strong intellectual infrastructure support the growth of new industries.

The pilot

The pilot site is located a couple of kilometres from the centre of Skellefteå, in the area of an old city landfill. The landfill was covered up prior to the development of industrial buildings, road works as well as a district heating facility and a fuelling station. These buildings separate the Erikslid area from the green area of Klockarberget. A new residential area is planned on the site and the Klockabergaparken (the Klockarberget park) will tie Erikslid to the Sjungrde dalen residential area, thereby creating a green connection in between. The area will contain family housing of different kinds.
The main challenges of this pilot site are the use of the old landfill site, the pollution produced, the handling of stormwater coming down Vitberget, as well as the need to make the area a more socially connecting place for people to interact. With regard to health and wellbeing, the goals are to improve the sense of safety, recreation, and relaxation, as well as reduction of stress.

Five specifically planned visionary solutions are financed by VARCITIES with the objectives of creating urban resilience through natural infrastructure, increasing biodiversity by creating a wetland bed, and advancing citizens’ awareness of climate change and the importance of biodiversity. VARCITIES will contribute to:

  • Control stormwater flooding by using natural soil as water retention
  • Use stormwater to create wetland bed by allowing the new residential area to be partially flooded and to foster planting of indigenous species on the wetland bed
  • Create inviting and safe surroundings in the park
  • Set up and go through the information plan about the green/blue area with residents
  • Create space in the park with bee hotels/insect habitats, permanent school-material.

The future city vision

Skellefteå has few years’ time to become a centre for industrial expansion of green batteries and green mining and metals. The battery manufacturer, Northvolt, is currently building a large-scale battery manufacturing plant just outside of Skellefteå. Local mining and metal industries – with Boliden in lead – are also investing in increased capacity and greener operations to match the increasing regional and European demands. This industrial expansion is putting increased demand and strain on the Skellefteå region to match the industrial development with societal infrastructural development in areas of housing, electricity, heating, cooling, mobility, transport, and education.

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