On Wednesday 24 January, The King and Queen visited Kiruna to find out about the ongoing process of moving the town.
Wednesday morning began at Kiruna Town Hall, where Chair of the Municipal Executive Board Kristina Zakrisson and municipal town planner and Professor of Urban Planning at KTH Göran Cars talked about the transformation of the town. The title of the talk was 'The world's biggest urban move – it needs to be fast, and it needs to go well!'. CEO of LKAB Jan Moström and LKAB's Director of Urban Transformation Stefan Hämäläinen then spoke about the company's role in the transformation of the town.
There then followed a coach trip around Kiruna, guided by Kristina Zakrisson and Göran Cars.
The next item on the agenda was a visit to Kiruna Church, where Priest Heli Pruikkonen and Administrative Director Roland Rova welcomed the visitors. The church was built between 1909 and 1912, and was designed by architect Gustaf Wickman. The altarpiece was painted by Prince Eugen. Kiruna Church will be moved from its current location, with a new location next to the churchyard between Kurravaaravägen and the new town centre.
The King and Queen also saw new town districts, the construction of the E10 route and the town hall clock tower, and the new town hall and county art museum.
The street network for the new town centre is almost complete, and its structure – which will be populated with homes, shops, hotels, etc. – is now emerging. The infrastructure for the new town centre, such as water supplies, sewerage, district heating and fibre internet, is already in place in the ground.
The visit to Kiruna concluded with lunch at the town hall, hosted by Kiruna Municipality. During lunch, The King and Queen were given a presentation of the town hall's history and its artworks.
The day in Kiruna ended with discussions on the town move.
Iron ore mining has been carried out in Kiruna for more than a century without having a significant effect on the centre of the town. However, in 2004 the mining company LKAB presented a forecast of how subsidence will reach the town centre. This marked the beginning of the town's transformation. Kiruna's Municipal Council decided that the town centre would have to be moved three kilometres east of its current location, requiring the construction of a new town centre and a new town hall. The timetable for the project runs until 2024.
The players in the process are Kiruna Municipality, including the municipal companies Tekniska Verken i Kiruna AB and Kirunabostäder, and LKAB, the Swedish Transport Administration and Vattenfall.
Kungaparet är i Kiruna för att på plats informera sig om den pågående stadsflytten. I över 100 år har järnmalmsbrytningen pågått i Kiruna. Till följd av sprickbildningar i marken från gruvbrytningen måste staden flyttas - 3 km öster om den nuvarande, med ny centrumbebyggelse och ett nytt stadshus. Bilderna är från Gustaf VI Adolfs besök i Kiruna i april 1968 och visar, svep till vänster: Besök i järnmalmsgruvan. Kiruna med fjället Kiirunavaara, där LKAB brutit malm sedan början av 1900-talet. Altartavlan i Kiruna kyrka är målad av prins Eugen. Kyrkobyggnaden är uppförd mellan 1909 och 1912, ritad av arkitekten Gustaf Wickman. Kiruna kyrka kommer att flyttas från sin nuvarande plats. Foton ur Bernadottebibliotekets arkiv. #kungahuset #kiruna