The Thingvellir Committee must obtain approval from UNESCO on their plans for the lot where Hotel Valhöll used to stand. The hotel was destroyed in fire on July 10 last summer. Thingvellir National Park has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2004.
Hotel Valhöll in Thingvellir. Photo by Páll Stefánsson.
The committee has concluded that all decision-making in regard to the Hotel Valhöll lot is sensitive and that it is important to think proposals through thoroughly. It has also been mentioned that the Icelandic nation should have a say in the matter, Fréttabladid reports.
Representatives of the architecture firms VA and Einrúm have met with committee members, and Sigrídur Margrét Gudmundsdóttir and Kjartan Ragnarsson, who operate the Borgarnes Settlement Center, are also keen on presenting their ideas.
Ragnarsson said in his view, no new buildings should be constructed in the lot, but peace and quiet should reign where Hotel Valhöll used to stand.
He and Gudmundsdóttir have an idea for a special center on the eventful historical era, which began with the foundation of the Althingi parliament at Thingvellir in 930 AD and ended with the inauguration of Bishop Ísleifur Gissurarson in 1056.
“It is by far the coolest period of the history of Iceland,” Ragnarsson said, adding that such a historical center could be located by the Thingvellir information center at Hakid.
Other ideas have also been mentioned to the Thingvellir Committee: Kristbjörn Helgi Björnsson and Svava Lóa Stefánsdóttir want to dedicate the area to an exhibition of farming methods and life during the Icelandic Commonwealth.
Click here to read more about the fire in Hotel Valhöll and the appointment of the Thingvellir Committee.