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Oslo, Norway

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A sleepy capital perched by the sea, Oslo is in the midst of an architectural surge. The old port and the new opera house are just two examples of why Norway’s capital is pointing the way fjordward.

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  The 400,000-square-foot Norwegian National Opera and Ballet, designed by the Oslo- and New York–based firm Snøhetta, features a plaza and roofscape conceived as a single glacierlike object entirely available to the public—–embracing what architect Tarald Lundevall calls the “Scandinavian idea of common ownership.”  Photo by: Jens Passoth
    The 400,000-square-foot Norwegian National Opera and Ballet, designed by the Oslo- and New York–based firm Snøhetta, features a plaza and roofscape conceived as a single glacierlike object entirely available to the public—–embracing what architect Tarald Lundevall calls the “Scandinavian idea of common ownership.”

    Photo by: Jens Passoth

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  Tarald Lundevall may be uneasy about the sometimes unequal balance between the public interest and private development in the city, but his affection for Oslo’s architecture remains unambiguous.  Photo by: Jens Passoth
    Tarald Lundevall may be uneasy about the sometimes unequal balance between the public interest and private development in the city, but his affection for Oslo’s architecture remains unambiguous.

    Photo by: Jens Passoth

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  David Adjaye’s conversion of a former train station into the Nobel Peace Center.  Photo by: Jens Passoth
    David Adjaye’s conversion of a former train station into the Nobel Peace Center.

    Photo by: Jens Passoth

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  The still-formidable 14th-century Akershus fortress, which presides over Oslo Fjord.  Photo by: Jens Passoth
    The still-formidable 14th-century Akershus fortress, which presides over Oslo Fjord.

    Photo by: Jens Passoth

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  The pool and fountains of Eidsvoll Square, a greensward that runs parallel to Oslo’s grand boulevard Karl Johans gate.  Photo by: Jens Passoth
    The pool and fountains of Eidsvoll Square, a greensward that runs parallel to Oslo’s grand boulevard Karl Johans gate.

    Photo by: Jens Passoth

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  Aker Brygge, a former shipyard that’s now a mélange of apartments, offices, shops, and restaurants.  Photo by: Jens Passoth
    Aker Brygge, a former shipyard that’s now a mélange of apartments, offices, shops, and restaurants.

    Photo by: Jens Passoth

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  A colorful corner of Grønland, a central Oslo district with a population expressive of the city’s ever-increasing multiculturalism.  Photo by: Jens Passoth
    A colorful corner of Grønland, a central Oslo district with a population expressive of the city’s ever-increasing multiculturalism.

    Photo by: Jens Passoth

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  The hippest thing about the 50-room Grims Grenka, Oslo’s first design hotel, isn’t the enclos­ed atrium (or the organic cocktails),it’s the short-stroll proximity to Akershus; the National Museum of Art, Architecture, and Design; and Karl Johans gate.  Photo by: Jens Passoth
    The hippest thing about the 50-room Grims Grenka, Oslo’s first design hotel, isn’t the enclos­ed atrium (or the organic cocktails),it’s the short-stroll proximity to Akershus; the National Museum of Art, Architecture, and Design; and Karl Johans gate.

    Photo by: Jens Passoth

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  The Art Hall at Tullinlokka, beside the National Gallery, which serves as a venue for special exhibitions.  Photo by: Jens Passoth
    The Art Hall at Tullinlokka, beside the National Gallery, which serves as a venue for special exhibitions.

    Photo by: Jens Passoth

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