Swedish schoolkids use Minecraft to redesign Stockholm city centre

A gaming collaboration with Minecraft and a group of schoolchildren has seen the ten-year-olds use virtual TNT to ‘flatten’ a part of  the city centre district for the 130,000sqm Urban Escape Stockholm regeneration,

Challenging convention, it was the students, from Loviselund School in Hässelby, Stockholm, who had the honour of marking the ground breaking ceremony. This all took place as contractors began construction work on the real site nearby - the first time a property development has been launched simultaneously in both virtual, and literal reality.

The kids were then challenged to design and rebuild their own unique interpretation of the Urban Escape Stockholm neighbourhood in Minecraft – built by online gaming community Team ProPain.

Karolin Forsling, chief development officer at AMF Fastigheter said, “We believe in collaboration in the creative process, and as developers of urban spaces we want to engage with Stockholm’s ‘future talents’, the people who will live, work and play in this city. By partnering with Minecraft, we are giving young people a chance to shape one of Europe's fastest growing cities and we’re inspired by how they have challenged convention and sparked new ideas.”

AMF Fastigheter will be taking inspiration from the students’ designs in the final delivery of elements such as the hotel and the Urban Escape Rooftops – Stockholm’s first public garden space built in the skies, connecting three buildings at roof-level.

One of the children, Michelle, said, "We built two swimming pools on the roof! And a big aquarium with lots and lots of octopuses! You cannot put horses up there on Minecraft as they don't like water and will be mad if it's too slippery."

"If I work in an office in the future, I would have plenty of flowers and trees so it won't be as boring. So, today, we built apple trees and lots of plants inside the office."

Set for completion in 2019, Urban Escape Stockholm will comprise five buildings, four streets and two squares – including a shopping centre, two hotels, office and retail space, restaurants, venues and the pioneering Epicenter, Stockholm’s first innovation house.

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