Identity crisis hit Malmo hard when they realised that the majority, if not all, the ship building industry was moved to Korea. In addition, years and years of mass productions have left Malmo dense with pollution and highly tainted soil.
It is almost impossible for one to notice the history of Malmo. The old Malmo has been transformed into probably one of the most ecological cities in the world today. Some of the traces of the past are preserved as a monument; a landmark that would remind people about the history of this city.
Ecological and Sustainable Living
The city of Malmo believes in harnessing all the elements that mother earth has given. From water to solar power, all natural energy plays an essential role in keeping the environment not only sustainable, but also cost and energy efficient.
Almost all the things our eyes meet is ecological; from passive houses that do not require electric heating, to how they process their bricks they use to build their pavements. Sustainable living is not an alternative here in Malmo, it is a life choice that all the citizens prioritise above all.
The Turning Torso
Malmo’s pride and landmark, The Turning Torso is the highest residential skyscraper in Scandinavia. It was built by a Spanish architect and was officially opened in 2005.
The Turning Torso is a massive contrary on the city’s most important label. It is not ecological or sustainable. Due to its height, even simple actions such as ascending and descending within the building cost a lot of energy, let alone to power the entire building to keep it running.
The building is simply an example of the irony of having a symbol that does not reflect the value that the city of Malmo holds. Its significance is only to serve as a title Malmo has above the rest of the Scandinavian countries, a symbol that sends a message that proves the mental durability and pride of Malmo despite all its past challenges.
Malmo as a Role Model
Undoubtedly, there is a tremendous amount of cities in the world that is in the brink of extinction, mostly because of pollution and unsuitable living conditions. Using Malmo as a very relevant example, these cities can learn a lot and start making changes right now. As the definition of sustainable varies from one place and one person to another, it is important to understand that sustainability does not involve profit, but instead it involves the living beings that occupy the lands (Henrik Wullf, 2016). A better future for humanity can build better future in all aspects of life. Prioritising on sustainability is the key to preserve and continue life without compromising the environment. For Malmo, the future is today. Their well known slogan, the city of tomorrow, is no longer out of reach as they have achieved a big success of turning their soiled land history into one of the most healthy and sustainable cities in the world.
Written by: Sienny Thio, Crossing Borders student