Kiruna is the northernmost town in Sweden, situated in the province of Lapland in Norrbotten County. Inhabitants – about 20 000.
The re-development of Kiruna is a reconstruction project, as the Kirunavaara mine, run by LKAB, undermines the current town center. Several buildings, including Sweden´s most beautiful church and the famous Town Hall, are to be moved or demolished. The whole town center is to be moved 3 kilometers to the east.
The ground deformations became apparent in 2003, and the redevelopment started in 2007. The moving of the town was started in 2014 and is expected to be finished by 2100. According to the plan, there will be a denser city centre with a greater focus on sustainability, green and blue infrastructure, pedestrians and public transport rather than automobiles.
Walking the empty streets at night, the snowy silence is almost visible, touchable, embedding you in cotton cold. I wonder how the people here really feel…knowing most of them will have to leave their homes and their familiar surroundings for something they have not chosen themselves. A great piece of history will be lost, and I guess a piece of Lapland´s soul as well.