Ålgård Church by Link Arkitektur features a concave vaulted roof

A dramatically scooped roofline creates a spiky steeple and a triangular entrance for this church in southern Norway by Link Arkitektur (+ slideshow).

Ålgård Church by LINK Arkitektur

Norwegian studio Link Arkitektur designed the pale timber-clad church for a congregation in Ålgård, a coastal community based just outside the southern Norwegian city Stavanger.

Ålgård Church by LINK Arkitektur

Two points of Ålgård Church's diamond-shaped roof plate peel upwards to create a hollow in the centre and two spikes that project into the sky over the pulpit and entrance – a form the architects describe as a "modern interpretation of a traditional church vault."

Ålgård Church by LINK Arkitektur

"One of the aims of the new church was to bring together as many functions as possible under one roof," explained the architects.

"Another requirement from the congregation was that the church should have an iconic character and a clear Christian style."

Ålgård Church by LINK Arkitektur

"This request was solved by the building's dynamic sculptural form, giving the appearance of a single expression evolving out of the landscape, extending towards the sky whilst mirroring the shape and slope of the surrounding terrain," they added.

Ålgård Church by LINK Arkitektur

Laminated timber beams form a latticed pattern across the ceiling of the church. This structure is intended as a play on the framework used to support traditional convex vaults.

"The result is an optical refraction as seen in traditional dome vaults," said the team.

Ålgård Church by LINK Arkitektur

Nine triangular panels within the latticework lift upwards, appearing like spines from the exterior. Slivers of glass set into the open edges of the flaps create form angled skylights, while closed ceiling panels are fitted with LEDs.

Ålgård Church by LINK Arkitektur

The main church hall, which features a patterned wooden floor, is flanked by two glazed walls. Banks of chairs are arranged to face a shallow stage where the pulpit and altar are positioned between two narrow glass columns.

A flight of stairs descends from the foyer to the classrooms, offices and a cafe located in the basement, which can also be accessed through an opening in the grass mound that frames the church's main entrance.

Ålgård Church by LINK Arkitektur

"By lowering the ground floor partially into the terrain, suitable space to accommodate the range of function rooms was generated, leaving the sacral space undisturbed on the upper floor," explained the designers.

A set of steps leading up to the church hall's triangular entrance also double as a terraced seating area.

Ålgård Church by LINK Arkitektur

Gardens separate the building from nearby houses, while a cemetery and chapel are set on the other side of a driveway.

A patch of lawn in front of the steeple is designed to host community and sporting events and has space for a small viewing amphitheatre or stage.

Photography is by Hundven Clements.

Algard Church by LINK Arkitektur
Site plan - click for larger image
Algard Church by LINK Arkitektur
Construction diagram one
Algard Church by LINK Arkitektur
Construction diagram two
Algard Church by LINK Arkitektur
Sectional diagram - click for larger image