Shopping is my cardio

In 1982, the shipyard and workshops at Aker Brygge closed their doors – for good. Three decades later, the area had not been transformed into the attractive shopping, business and residential area that was envisioned.

Category→ 
Retail
Work→ 
Visual identity, strategy, type design
Awards→ 
DOGA Award for Design Excellence, 2 x Visuelt
Client→ 
Norwegian Property

Challenge

“The waterfront was seething with tourists and yuppies in summer. But for the rest of the year, the whole area was dead”, says Herman Dyrø. From 2010 to 2015, he oversaw a 2.5 billion NOK investment to revitalise the area, on behalf of Norwegian Property.

Up until this point, the fact that Aker Brygge sat on perhaps the best real estate in Oslo wasn’t taken advantage of. Moreover, the mall felt cheap and failed to communicate in any coherent way what it wanted to be, or who it was for. 

“You’d read ‘Welcome to Aker Brygge’ in five languages at every entrance, while no one was talking to the primary, local market”, says Dyrø.

The challenge was to reposition it from a cluttered mall to a thriving city district.

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Historical images from Aker Brygge
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Solution

Early on in the repositioning process, Bleed was involved on a strategic level and was tasked with developing Aker Brygge’s new visual identity.

Central to the overall strategy was to highlight the contrast between old and new, and between traditional craftsmanship and innovative technology.

There used to be carpentry workshops alongside companies making parts for F16 fighter aircraft. Now you’ll see industrial buildings literally reflected in the glass of modern ones.

— Dyrø @Npro

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But prior to all that, one vital task was to convey the vision for the new Aker Brygge to the desired tenants — a huge challenge, considering that virtually everyone familiar with Oslo would have already made up their mind about the place. Besides 3D visualizations, one of the tools used was a lavish-looking leather book.

It’s posh, but it’s honest: This is an expensive place to work and live, but then again it offers an amazing standard.

— Dag Solhaug Laska @Bleed

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Result

In the end, Aker Brygge got the desired tenants in both the office and retail segment. Today, the area is thriving. The combination of a clear vision and the right visual identity tightly knitted with the architecture and the business strategy have given the desired results.

Bleeds work helped us attract brands that would never have set foot on Aker Brygge previously. We moved Aker Brygge from the 80s into the present. It went from being an introvert mall to a vibrant neighbourhood with shops and eateries along all facades, and lots of life.

— Herman Dyrø @Npro

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Aker Brygge signage system
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Aker Brygge custom type.
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BBB

Oslo  ↝  Vienna