The jury writes about the OperaKvarteret area in its decision:
The project appears to be a forward-looking move in which classic values regarding the treatment of citys buildings and architecture finds a new, powerful and vital expression. This is a project that is visually striking from a distance, efficient and tidy when you drive past - and rich in detail and surprising if one finds oneself in the middle of it.The buildings challenge current construction and architectural principles, but more importantly: they introduce a new typology where residential, commercial and service integrates tightly and seamlessly. The projects vicinity to Oslos largest transport hub we see as outline of a template for how future urban development should take place.
The variety and diversity probably works particularly well here because of the strong and clear holistic approach: a clear basic idea has been translated and interpreted through a series of unique buildings, by a series of different architects, without the basic concept being reduced or degraded.The result is a breathtaking and spectacular growth of the largest and most important city planning strategy (in Oslo) in our time. The process shows how the persistence and courage of a strong developer has found a similar public partner, with an exceptionally successful and fruitful collaboration as result!
Cityprisen, established by the Homeowners' Association, was first awarded in 1998. The awards aim is to create awareness of successful real estate projects. OperaKvarteret, MVRDVs Barcode urban plan, was commissioned in 2003 by OSU Developers and the City of Oslo.
The mix-use project of 220.000m2 is almost complete. Within the masterplan MVRDV has realised the main building of DNBs Headquarters, a 38,500m2 office building with panoramic views of the fjord.