Designing the irresistible circular society
Making nature and vulnerable groups stakeholders
We work to make circular processes visible and accessible for all local actors
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Desire experiments with creating sustainable, attractive, and inclusive urban spaces which respect the limited resources of the planet.
The aim of Desire is to start an architectural movement based on cohesion and equality.
Desire will create a movement that sets new standards and develops methods for transforming urban spaces.


BTC City  Ljubljana
BTC City Ljubljana, a large shopping and business centre in Slovenia, is on a mission to bring nature back into its urban landscape – and to become a climate change-resistant and thriving ecosystem. This includes various greening activities. These actions aim also to support biodiversity, enhance the microclimate, and improve the comfort and well-being of visitors, employees, and business partners.
New European Bauhaus in the Nordics – what have we learned, how can we benefit from this knowledge, and what can we potentially develop further? Welcome to an engaging and interactive conversation! Learn more and sign up.
Photo: Benjamin Hesselholdt
How can humans reconnect with nature? Together with project partners and the locals, we experiment with this as part of the Desire project in the northern part of the city of Turin – at the urban farm Cascina Falchera. Have a look at the film!

Meet us at these events

Denmark (partners in Herlev, Høje-Taastrup and Kalundborg), Turin, Amsterdam, Milan, Ljubljana and Riga. 01.03.2024
‘Capture Your City’ is a photo contest and exhibition (from 1st of March to 1st of May, 2024) where we invite citizens to take photos of their city. In 2024 we’re extending the scope of the project to not only include Danish cities and architecture but also citizens all over Europe, especially people in the cities of Riga, Amsterdam, Milan, Turin, and Ljubljana to show what themes like nature, biodiversity and belonging look like in their city. The competition and exhibition will be part of the New European Bauhaus project ‘Desire – an Irresistible Circular Society’ where we’re collaborating with organizations in your city on experimenting with creating sustainable, attractive, and inclusive urban spaces which respect the limited resources of the planet. The photo competition is supported by Realdania. An international jury will select 50-100 photos for the exhibition and 3 winners of the competition. Stay tuned for more info!
Haveværtens Drivhus, Hørkær 8, Herlev, Denmark, March 1, 2024 - 16.00-18.00 CET. 01.03.2024
The two artists, Tora and Felia, will present their performative practices and audio experiences. As Garden Caretakers they work choreographically with sound, body and place, and invite us to enter into a relationship with the site's diverse communities. The event is free and open to everyone.
Online 05.03.2024
New European Bauhaus in the Nordics – what have we learned, how can we benefit from this knowledge, and what can we potentially develop further? The two Nordic New European Bauhaus lighthouse demonstrators, Desire and NEB-STAR, invite interested stakeholders to two digital dialogue meetings and one physical workshop to share and discuss learnings around the implementation of the NEB values in a Nordic context. The first one is on March 5th, 8.30-10.00 (CET) online (Desire) Title: Art and aesthetics in urban transformation. Meet: Madeleine Kate McGowasn, NXT/Herlev (Desire) – The Garden Caretaker concept: How does art create value for developers and construction companies? Helene Eiliott, Stavanger Municipality (NEB-Star) - NEB-STAR: connecting people and places - exploring relational aesthetics in urban development, and Amalia de Götzen, AAU (Palimpsest) - The Palimpsest project: experimenting and envisioning novel landscape scenarios through co-creation. Click to sign up!
Dansk Arkitektur Center, Bryghuspladsen 10, 1473 Copenhagen K, Denmark. 07.03.2024
The Desire project cooperates with our partner DAC - Danish Architecture Center in this dialogue meeting in Copenhagen, Denmark. (DANISH)

There is almost no urban development project that does not put the community at the centre. But why do communities find it so difficult to thrive in local designs anyway? During the event, we examine how we can connect more with each other and with physical places at a time when people across ages, genders and classes increasingly feel alone.

Meet, among others, philosopher and researcher Christiane Mossin (CBS), cultural creator Jesper Koefoed-Melson (Vida Local), urban strategic advisor Niels Bjørn (BYLYD) together with co-CEO Signe Birkving Bertelsen (BRIQ). Photo: Rasmus Hjortshoj.

Click to sign up!
Parc du Cinquantenaire and Museum Kunst & Geschiedenis in Brussels 09.04.2024
Desire is participating in the New European Bauhaus Festival, which takes place from April 9th to 13th, 2024 at Parc du Cinquantenaire and Museum Kunst & Geschiedenis in Brussels. This highly anticipated festival brings together people from all over the world to share their visions and actions for a future that is sustainable, beautiful, and inclusive.

The festival will feature a diverse and packed program of panel discussions, exhibitions, artistic performances, and more. The European Commission organizes it in collaboration with Belgium’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union. This year’s festival edition will also include the New European Bauhaus Prizes presentation, recognizing projects, designs, and ideas aligned with the movement’s commitment to shaping a sustainable, beautiful, and inclusive future for Europe. A total of 20 winners from across Europe and beyond will be honoured at an official award ceremony.

In addition to the rich program in Brussels, there will be satellite events and activities across Europe, fostering creativity, collaboration, and inspiration for a better tomorrow. 🌟🌍🏛️
Dansk Arkitektur Center, Bryghuspladsen 10, 1473 Copenhagen K, Denmark. 02.09.2024
Stay tuned for more information on this event with our Desire partner organisation DAC. Photo: Jesper Værn Jensen

Demonstration sites

Desire’s three themes are powered with knowledge from eight territorial sites, three in Denmark, two in Italy, and one in each of the other countries: The Netherlands, Slovenia, and Latvia.

Creating social and inclusive housing where we address the need for inclusive processes in the circular transformation of social housing.

Transforming through symbiotic relationships where we will focus on optimising materials flow when rethinking urban landscapes in cities.

Reconciling cities with nature where we will design livable habitats and functional ecosystems from a multispecies perspective while rebalancing ‘land use’ to accommodate resource generation and biodiversity.

  • All
  • Social housing
  • Symbiotic relationships
  • Reconciling cities

Creating social and inclusive housing

Addresses the need for inclusive processes in circular transformation of social housing.

Wildemanbuurt is a post-war social housing area of poor quality, a vulnerable neighbourhood (app. 5000 inhabitants) in the city. The aim is to create new pathways, prototypes and processes towards new forms of meaning, imagination, shareability and realisation of an inclusive and sustainable (circular) living environment, by exploring how local qualities (high cultural diversity, high share of young and elderly people, heritage, green space, edible gardens) can integrate with policies and expertise of housing corporations.
In Ziepju (Riga, LV), an old Soviet social housing block needs renovation. The site will experiment with a new way forward in public renovation and transformation projects, building on inclusion and circularity, with the aim of transforming the old housing area into an attractive living environment.
Gadehavegaard, (Høje-Taastrup, DK) is a large monofunctional residential area with 986 apartments from the 1970s. It will undergo a comprehensive transformation by 2030 through re-positioning the neighbourhood as a suburban vision 2.0. Elements from the surrounding landscape will add qualities to the neighbourhood and support a continued perception of being suburban. The site will experiment with citizen involvement in redefining open spaces and their connection with nature and how circular principles guide the implementation of the transformation through reuse and recirculation of materials.

Transforming through symbiotic relationships

Focuses on how to optimize use of materials flow when rethinking urban landscapes in cities.

MIND (Milan, IT) is an innovation district in the early phase of designing the waste management system of a +350.000 sqm green and public space. A challenge concerns digitising and “greening” the huge construction supply chain while at the same time including the 70,000 daily user community to promote environmentally friendly behaviours – for instance in terms of mobility to reach the site which is around 15 minutes away from Milan city centre. The aim is to leverage on the ingenuity of the local communities and stakeholders to turn projects into a city-wide undertaking.
Existing view HT
Kalundborg Circular Campus (Kalundborg, DK) concerns urban transformation in a smaller city located 100 km west of Copenhagen with a thriving industrial ‘Symbiosis’ connecting more than 20 different streams of water, energy and materials, and with public and private stakeholders engaged across sectors and at multiple levels. The aim to develop a new irresistible circular campus as part of the Copenhagen-based Royal Danish Academy. Principles of circularity combined with art, design and inclusion will influence a broad coalition building of cross sectoral organizations and across current and future generations of professionals. The proximity of leading businesses and of several schools of vocational training, will contribute to this work where younger generations will be engaged in co-designing their own future context.

Reconciling cities with nature

Is about designing livable habitats and functional ecosystems from a multispecies perspective while rebalancing ‘land use’ to accommo-date resource generation and biodiversity.

BTC City - a large business, shopping, recreation, entertainment, and cultural centre located 3 km from the city centre of Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia - has a visionary goal: to transform the centre into a regionally leading green, climate-resistant, and attractive symbiotic business hub. This transformation aims to create shared value for various stakeholders, including users, businesses, the city, and the local community. (Ljubljana, SI) aims at a transformation of the city center to become a regionally leading green, climate resistant and attractive symbiotic business city with shared value for different stakeholders (users, businesses, city, local community) by integrating nature and non-human species more directly in strategies for future investments
Cascina Falchera (Turin, IT) – an urban farming and educational area on the outskirts of the City of Turin, aims to regenerate the area through circularity principles and as part of an innovative urban regeneration movement to support the local community and reconnect people, especially the young generations, with natural spaces and the biodiversity and historical as well as and environmental values of the site.
At the site where the Herlev Asphalt Factory (Herlev, DK) used to be located, we will engage in a redefinition of a character that is important to reconcile city with nature: The Caretaker. This will imply experimenting with a role that embodies cross-disciplinary skills unfolding through the intersection of art, storytelling, biodiversity and circularity, for instance facilitating and curating social art pieces that seek to stimulate and strengthen the relationship between local inhabitants and introduce art as a method for social and ecological regeneration.
Photos from the workshop on May 31, 2023. Photo credit: Anže Krže
Get updated on the Desire project to watch it blossom
Desire will create a movement that sets new standards and develops methods for transforming urban spaces