Photos by Tim van de Velde
Make no mistake: Incineration Line 6, a waste-to-energy incinerator/power plant in Roskilde, Denmark recently-completed by Dutch architect Erick van Egeraat, is a thing to be behold: spotted with laser-cut circles, its concealed, individually-controlled lights illuminate the umber-colored aluminum tower from the inside-out at night—a symbol for the combustion taking place within.
"I want to engage Incineration Line 6 in a dialogue with its historic and industrial surroundings. Close to the ground we shaped the building to reflect the angular factory roofs of the immediate surroundings," said van Egeraat, following his 2008 win of the international competition to design the structure. "We then let the building culminate in a 100m tall spire. This spire pays the due respect to the existing historic landmark, Roskilde Cathedral, with its trademark twin spires and its warm brick and stone material palette."
It is, without a doubt, a beautiful piece of architecture, one destined to not only power and heat the surrounding region, potentially a future landmark in the low-lying Danish landscape.
While few doubt the promise of waste-to-energy programs (the country of Sweden is able to recycle 99% of its garbage through them), what makes Incineration Line 6 stand out is its commitment to beauty, despite the less-than-glamorous nature of its operations. The lighting itself—112 Martin Exterior 410 fixtures and 78 Tripix 1200 LED strips were installed, controlled by Martin's M-PC software—was custom made for the plant by Harman brand, Martin Professional. Explains van Egeraat, "At night the backlit perforated facade transforms the incinerator into a gently glowing beacon – a symbol of the plant's energy production.
"Several times an hour a spark of light will gradually grow into a burning flame that lights up the entire building. When the metaphorical fire ceases, the building falls back into a state of burning embers."
An emblem of the beauty found when form-meets-function, Danish waste management company Kara/Noveren soon may have one more type of clutter to deal with—tourists.
Below, check out more images of Incineration Line 6: