Oslo wants to be more colorful

Oslo city council working on plan for more colors on buildings


Photo: Gorm Kallestad / NTB
The Barcode project in Oslo’s Bjørvika neighborhood includes the redevelopment of a former dock.


The Oslo city council wants to add more color to the capital and has started work on creating a guide for the use of color in Oslo.

The city council believes that Oslo needs to be more colorful and is tired of the fact that for a longer period of time, there have been fewer colors on new buildings.

Now they want to take the colors back in the architecture and in the cityscape.

“Colors and different material choices create a sense of well-being and are important for mental health. Colors and material choices can break up otherwise slightly boring facades,” said City Councilor for Urban Development Rasmus Reinvang in a press release.

The city council agrees that Oslo should be a leading city for innovative, diverse, and beautiful architecture. That is why they have adopted an architectural policy, and now work is starting on a color guide to motivate increased use of color and variation in building material choices.

“The color guide, together with the architectural policy, will inspire high quality in the design of new buildings, more colors, pleasant meeting places, and outdoor spaces. We place great emphasis on pleasant urban spaces. It is important for people’s well-being and it is important for the city,” said the city councilor.

The Oslo Planning and Building Agency is commissioned to develop the color guide. The guide is intended to provide good advice to residents, developers, housing associations, planners, caseworkers, and others, whether it is new buildings planned for construction or if it is a housing association that wants to rehabilitate a building facade.

Translated by Lori Ann Reinhall

This article originally appeared in the May 21, 2021, issue of The Norwegian American.

Avatar photo


NTB (Norsk Telegrambyrå), the Norwegian News Agency, is a press agency and wire service that serves most of the largest Norwegian media outlets. The agency is located in Oslo and has bureaus in Brussels, Belgium, and Tromsø in northern Norway