A Mile for Reykjavik Level 2. Listed project.

Reykjavik, Islanda — 2007

In order to satisfy the proponent's goals, the project 051442 adopts the following development strategy:


The capital identity of the town of Reykjavik will be supported by a linear Mile of open spaces, green houses, ponds and public buildings, running on the original site of Vatnsmyri airport's main runaway and connecting the actual town centre with the coast and further on with the outer districts of the town, south of Skerjafjord. The entire new expansions from both west and east sides of the town are oriented on the linear Mile, leaded by a transversal system of directional, commercial and public buildings.

The Mile

According with the tradition and the present townscape of Reykjavik, the building model generally proposed by the project in the Vatnsmyri area is a low rising building system with increasing densities in correspondence with the linear urban fabric of the Mile. The medium high of the proposed new settlements is 12 meters while the maximum high in the project is reached by the system of public and directional buildings transversal to the Mile, with a maximum high of 22 meters.

Built Mass

The proposed new housing settlements are low density semi-detached and detached buildings of different typologies, mixed with four-five storey apartments buildings. The Mile is composed by a complex of public sheltered open spaces of different section adapted to the Icelandic climate. In some locations the public space assume the nature of a green / controlled-climate house, hosting trees and plants. The head of the public and commercial buildings transversal to the Mile is directly connected with the green houses, in order to accord a complete sheltered connection between the opposite sides of the Mile. Each green house is passed-through by the light tramway running along the Mile and hosts a tram stop on the line.

Land / Building use

The quantity of forest surface in Reykjavik urban area is planned to increase of 70% on its actual amount in the future 25 years along a east-west belt from Oskjuhlid Hill towards Skerjafjord coast, crossing the Mile and re-connecting the residential districts of Skerjafjordur. The quantity of water surfaces is planned to be increased of 50% by a proposed new main water basin adjacent to the bird sanctuary, north-west of the Mile's head, with addiction of the proposed ponds system along the Mile. A thermal and seaside is created in the Nautholvisk area, adding to the existing facilities a new large thermal and sea-water bathing basin and nautical sports outfits.


The Mile is a strong public connecting element between the central town and the outer districts. A light tramway is running along the Mile. In the Northern head of the Mile the tramway is proposed to be connected to the central town by an underground tunnel. In the Southern end of the Mile the tramway line is proposed to be integrated by a speed boat line connecting with the outer coastal districts of the town. A transversal roads system is proposed orthogonal to the Mile and under passing it, in order to connect on the east and west side of the town and the planned new expansions.


The urban fabric of the Mile and the Mile-oriented new settlements are a medium-long term building plan due to be phased in a period of 25 years, correspondent to the growing period of the natural elements proposed by the project. The Mile architecture is able to be realized in different phases, according to the time, and it is able to be re-assembled after different delimitations, without losing its value of a temporary crystallization in a process of transformation. 1. Phase. Establishment of the new proposed forest area. Public mobility system along the Mile line with tramway and speed boat line. Connecting stations to universities, hospital and thermal development. Interregional transportation hub. 2. Phase. Directional transversal system to the Mile and connected housing. Sheltered public spaces and first green houses on the Mile. Housing settlements partially realized. 3. Phase. Completed development of the technological Campus of the University. Commercial transversal system to the Mile. Public spaces and green houses of the Mile completed. Housing settlements advanced. 4. Phase. Vatnsmyri project completed


The transversal system of public directional and cultural buildings, mostly transparent and enlightened, located into a linear pattern, will reproduce in the air general view of Reykjavik from the south, the punctual system of the airport's light, as a memory of the past function of the Vatnsmyri area.


  • Roberto A. Cherubini
  • Anna Esposito
  • Sara D'Innocenzo
  • Cristina Labianca
  • Andrea Lanna
  • Lorenzo Pagnini
  • Antonio Menghini Calderon
  • Collaboratori

  • Stephanie Barbieri
  • Ilenia Bassetti
  • Michele Caramella
  • Alessia Pasqua
  • Alsira Raxhimi