[Peter Zumthor]

Allmannajuvet is a ravine or canyon located along the river Storelva in the municipality of Sauda in Rogaland county, Norway. The ravine is located in a rural, forested area along the Norwegian County Road 520 between the town of Sauda and the village of Hellandsbygda. This was the site of a large zinc mine which began operations in 1881 and closed in 1899, due to the changing market prices of zinc and high extraction costs. At its peak, the mine had 160 employees and was a major part of zinc exports from Norway.

In 2001 Peter Zumthor was commissioned by the Norwegian road administration to design a rest area, museum and cafe. After a long period with planning and design changes, the construction started in 2008. It should take 8 years before the project was finished, but in September 2016 the official opening was held. The museum is open for visitors in the summer time from June-August, and for groups ordering in advance the rest of the year. Three buildings are finished, and only the old path leading to the mines are yet to open. During a flood in 2014 parts of the path and a bridge were washed away, and work is now under way to repair the damage. The former mine site is maintained as an annex of Ryfylke Museum.

These simplistic buildings are inspired by the mining operation, the drudgery and the workers’ strenuous everyday lives. All these structures are made up of three main elements: a simple black box, an encasing support structure made from wood, and a corrugated zinc roof canopy.

Source: www.atlasofplaces.com

Photography by:  Aldo Amoretti