This 125-year-old Swedish Town Has Relocated, Buildings and All


Kiruna, a Swedish town within the Arctic Circle, has had to relocate owing to geological instability brought on by mining. This unusual circumstance is the focus of Kiruna Forever, an exhibition at ArkDes. Ingenjörsvillan, a house in Kiruna, was one of the structures moved. In the town’s new location, a circular city hall designed by Henning Larsen plays centerpiece. Courtesy Jessica Nilden

Kiruna, a Swedish town within the Arctic Circle, has had to relocate owing to geological instability brought on by mining. This unusual circumstance is the focus of Kiruna Forever, an exhibition at ArkDes. Ingenjörsvillan, a house in Kiruna, was one of the structures moved. In the town’s new location, a circular city hall designed by Henning Larsen plays centerpiece. Courtesy Jessica Nilden

Kiruna Forever, an exhibition at ArkDes, traces the town’s relocation due to geological instability.

“Kiruna is on the move,” says Carlos Mínguez Carrasco, curator of the new exhibition Kiruna Forever. Kiruna, a 125-year-old Swedish town that sprouted around the iron mine of the same name, started an official relocation process in 2018 after decades of discussion with the state-owned mining company LKAB. Today, as the expansion of the mine destabilizes the ground surrounding it, nearby buildings are being demolished or loaded onto flatbed trucks and moved to the new city center nearly two miles east.

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