Church, Rørvik, Norway

Rørvik's new church will be built on the old site of the church, on the hill near the harbour. The building ascends toward the water with its sacred sign, and as a landmark, embodies a visible icon for approaching ships. At the same time, the church complies with the urban structure of the adjacent buildings and the layout of the town.

The roof, with its soft curves,  assimilates to the coastal town's climatic conditions, taking a deliberate stand to the roughness of the cliffs, while allowing for the rain water to flow freely over the rooftop and into two collection tanks.

Simplicity, elegance and naturalness are the three characteristics of the church, which is comprised of two different spatial shapes: the nave and the steeple. The hills and the church form a unity, letting winds blow over them. The sunshine leaves its shadows on the white surfaces of the church and emphasises the vividness of the building.

Millions of small glass plates twinkle like stars in a colour spectrum ranging from orange to yellow, merging with the soft yellow and deep blue hues, while shaping the artistically designed spherical glass wall that symbolises Jesus' message (John 8.12): "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."

The church's interior features 300 seats, which can be extended by 80 additional seats in the vestibule. There is a multi-purpose room for the parish upstairs, which can be directly joined to the church's interior, offering another 84 seats. The vestibule serves as the meeting point for the parish, and is used for conferences, celebrations and as a café, which is supplied by the adjacent kitchen. Upstairs, there are offices and the consultation room of the church leader and local council.

For the development of the new church, the main requirements were in the foreground:

A. sustainable use of resources and favourable whole life costs
B. complete, unhindered accessibility to the interior and outdoor space
C. the incorporation of the past and the future

This resulted in a compact and space-efficient building constructed entirely from Norwegian wood. The free-spanning building follows the construction principles of the Vikings.

The main supporting structure is made of groins with shear rigid planks attached that make up the roof and slab shells of the church, which is covered in white roof cladding.

The steeple serves as the technology centre and houses the electrical engineering, heat recovery and ventilation systems, the latter of which are secured via the two gill-like side openings. If needed, a wind turbine for generating electricity can be retrofitted. Hydrophilic floor heating is available in all rooms. The raised floor provides ventilation, which is conducted to the upstairs rooms via fixed points. Preconditioned fresh air is conducted into the rooms on the ground and upper floor. Ventilation is also possible by opening the windows and doors.


Kirkevergen i Vikna




Church room, foyer, sacristy, baptism sacristy, activity room, office

Services Provided

Interdisciplinary Overall Planning, Interior Design, Furnishings Planning, Ecological Spacial Planning, Auditing under DGNB System

Services Provided

Interdisciplinary Overall Planning, Interior Design, Furnishings Planning, Ecological Spacial Planning, Auditing under DGNB System