"It will be beautiful!"

Per-Aage Nilsson is the right man in the right place. With a background as an athlete, he will have the opportunity to translate his interest in sports into architecture as head of FOJAB's Leisure studio. His projects include Swedbank Stadium in Malmö, the planned football stadium in Lund and Studenternas in Uppsala.

- The Leisure studio focuses on creating new arenas for meetings, socializing and activities that mainly take place outside working hours - such as shopping malls, sports fields, arenas, experience centers and golf courses. In addition to the sports arenas mentioned above, Leisure is working on the urban transformation of the Mobilia shopping center in Malmö together with Jais architects.

Per-Aage Nilsson has competed in ice hockey, football and athletics. This experience is very valuable when he takes on the task of creating and redesigning classic Swedish sports arenas, such as the Studenternas in Uppsala.

What is the challenge with Studenternas?
- Studenternas is a mythical place, home to Sirius and host of the Swedish Championship final in bandy. The sports ground is beautifully located along the Fyrisån river and the site is established in the city. The idea is to preserve the open values as part of the surrounding park and city.

What do you think is new and groundbreaking about the project?
- "We want to build something with strong appeal in the city even when it's not match day. As we see it, it will be a multifunctional arena that is never closed. Our starting point is the park space, and from here we are working to enhance the site and the experience by opening up the space. The feeling should be that the arena belongs to the park. An ordinary arena is surrounded by fences - here we want to do the opposite, and create a meeting place that offers a sunny shortcut through the park. When there is a match, the arena is transformed and of course the party atmosphere should be seen and felt.

What do you think Uppsala residents think about the plans?
- I hope that they, like us, have a desire to have an open arena that is part of the natural walking paths through the park. Being able to sit in the sun in the stands and enjoy the A teams training - that's a great goal!

What is the status of the project?
- We have completed a parallel assignment that dealt with the entire park with a football arena, bandy track, school and housing, but we do not yet know what the future holds. However, we do know that an arena that does not close is an asset in the park in everyday life, and can be built so that it is safe and functional when there is a match. There are many qualities in the work that we have done and much that can be realized in the next phase. An exciting idea in the project is that the football arena should also function for bandy in the winter.

Imagine a shiny ice on the inner court, it will be beautiful!