Snarøya church

Working church with a rectangular plan - in collaboration with architect Odd Østbye.








Oslo, Norway

Snarøya Church is a working church and concrete sculpture constructed in a rectangular form. It is dominated by raw concrete where the traces of the formwork boards actively contribute to the ornamentation of the church. Since the church was located in the flight path of Fornebu Airport, there were restrictions on height and requirements for sound insulation.

The roof volume is detached from the walls, allowing light to enter the church through glass panels. The church room is a rectangle pressed with two circular arcs, where the center points and tangent points have an internal connection that determines the shape. The meeting of the curved walls with the roof surface is a precise contour geometrically determined by an inclined plane meeting a cylinder. The result is a feeling that the roof curves, contributing architecturally to creating a space with tension and a sacred effect.

The location of the church on a slope, its organic shape, the vegetation, the flat roof, and the low bell tower allow the church to blend seamlessly into the landscape and surroundings. With this humble approach to the environment and nature, the church appears open and inclusive.