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Underwater Restaurant, Swimming Pool, and Preschool Planned for Gufunes Neighbourhood

Sea bathing facilities, a swimming pool, a preschool, a packaging-free grocery store, and an underwater restaurant are all projects that will soon be built in the developing Gufunes neighbourhood in eastern Reykjavík, RÚV reports. Reykjavík City Council has approved the development proposal submitted by Þorpið-Vistfélag that won a competition for the design of Gufunes pier.

Industrial neighbourhood reinvented

“This area is changing from being an old, dead industrial neighbourhood to being very lively,” stated Áslaug Guðrúnardóttir, chief communications and marketing officer of Þorpið-Vistfélag. “Our proposal is to construct two buildings there that will open onto the old Gufunes pier. The idea is to […] have sea bathing facilities there, have a swimming pool and hot tubs, apartments, and there will be a restaurant there that has already been designed and it will be partly underwater. We will have a preschool there and a grocery store, and it will all be in the same style.”

Áslaug expects the project to be completed in the next three to five years. Renderings of the design can be seen below.

The Gufunes area was long the site of a fertiliser plant and waste-sorting facilities, but since those operations have left the area, it has seen significant development. For some years, Gufunes has been the location of film production company Reykjavík Studios, which is now expanding its facilities at the site. The City of Reykjavík has offered abandoned industrial facilities at the site to artists and creative workers who would like to develop them into studios and workspaces.

Water taxi would shorten trip to city centre

Þorpið-Vistfélag has already built an environmentally-friendly residential neighbourhood in Gufunes. It made headlines, however, when some residents complained of the poor quality of the buildings and the lack of public transportation to and from the site (particularly as the units were advertised as “sustainable”).

Áslaug mentioned ideas to construct a pedestrian bridge out to nearby Viðey island, from which a water taxi would be available to the city centre. Travelling from Gufunes to the city centre by land is a significantly longer trip, as it requires going around an inlet.

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