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Gammel Kongevej

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Gammel Kongevej
Length1,800 m (5,900 ft)
LocationCopenhagen, Denmark
QuarterFrederiksberg
Postal code1619, 1859
Nearest metro stationFrederiksberg Allé
Coordinates55°40′32.85″N 12°32′39.11″E / 55.6757917°N 12.5441972°E / 55.6757917; 12.5441972
Southeast endJernbanevej
Major
junctions
Alhambravej
Northwest endSmallegade

Gammel Kongevej (literally "Old King's Road) is the principal shopping street of Frederiksberg in Copenhagen, Denmark. Running roughly parallel to Frederiksberg Allé and Vesterbrogade, it extends from Vesterport station at the southern end of The Lakes and continues for some 1.8 km west to Frederiksberg City Hall Square where it continues as Smallegade. In the opposite end, Jernbanegade connects it to Copenhagen City Hall Square.

History

17th and 18th century

Gammel Kongevej seen on a map detail from the 18th century
Gammel Kongevej seen on a map detail from the 18th century

Gammel Kongevej is one of the oldest road sections in Frederiksberg, originally providing a direct connection between Copenhagen's Western City Gate and the village of Solbjerg. From there the road continued past the Damhus Lake towards Roskilde, giving rise to the name Roskildegaden ("The Roskilde Street"), which is seen in some documents from the beginning of the 17th century.[1]

Gammel Kongevej and Vesterbrogade seen diverging from Valby Hill in 1758
Gammel Kongevej and Vesterbrogade seen diverging from Valby Hill in 1758

The road was improved by Christian IV in the 1620s. The name Kongevejen (English: King's Road) emerged about a generation later when it became the principal road to Ny Amager (New Amager), as Frederiksberg was then called, where the king had several properties.[2] The name of the road changed to Gammel Kongevej after a new Route de Roie, Frederiksberg Allé, opened in 1705.

19th century

The road passed through open countryside with only a few scattered country houses until the mid-19th century when Copenhagen's fortifications were decommissioned and the city was allowed to develop freely. A number of new country houses were built along the rad but most of them were replaced by multi-story apartment buildings with shops in the ground floors in the 1880s and 1890s.

20th century

Gammel Kongevej in 1909: One of the old country houses to the right and the former iron foundry on the left, both now demolished
Gammel Kongevej in 1909: One of the old country houses to the right and the former iron foundry on the left, both now demolished

P. Andersen opened the Svanholm Brewery at No. 64 in 1853.[3] It was merged with several other breweries to form The United Breweries in 1891 and most of its buildings were replaced by a machine factory and iron factory.

Part of the site was cleared in 1904–05 to make way for the new street Prinsesse Maries Allé. The rest of the industrial plant was replaced by the cinema complex Kinopalæet in 1918.[1]

Gammel Kongevej mainly catered to the middle and upper middle classes. The area next to the iron foundry was home to a small working-class neighbourhood with an infamous reputation. In the 1950s, Jørn Utzon, architect of the Sydney Opera House, drafted a project for the area which was never built. It consisted of tower blocks in a green space inspired by Japanese gardens.[2]

Notable buildings and residents

The apartment building at No. gammel Kongevej 25 hides the former buildings of Emil Messerschmidt's Tannery. The current buildings, a three-winged complex, were built after a fire in 1867. It is one of relative few examples of the many minor industrial enterprises that once dominated the courtyard of Copenhagen's Vesterbro and Nørrebro districts.[4]

Dating from the 1850s, No. 78 is one of the oldest apartment buildings along the street. It has a small front garden with a fence towards the street.[2] The Catholic school Ansgarstiftelsen at No. 15 is decorated with a mural byNiels Macholm mural,

Just off Gammel Kongevej, between the streets H.C. Ørsteds Vej and Bülowsvej, is a small enclave which has been described as Denmark's first urban neighbourhood of single-family detached homes. It consists of the side streets Uraniavej and Lindevej.

The area around Sankt Jørgens Sø is home to a cluster of modern buildings which include the Tycho Brahe Planetarium and two highrises, Copenhagen Scandic Hotel and the 18-storey Codan Building.[2]

Gallery

  • "The Hot Iron"" at
    "The Hot Iron"" at
  • The beginning of the street at The Lakes
    The beginning of the street at The Lakes

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "Hvordan Ny Kongevej blev til Gammel Kongevej" (in Danish). Berlingske. Retrieved 2014-06-10.
  2. ^ a b c d "Gasværket". Frederiksberg Allé. Archived from the original on 2012-04-23. Retrieved 2013-04-13.
  3. ^ "Gårdinteriør fra Bryggeriet Svanholm Gammel Kongevej 68 set fra gården nærmest Vodroffsvej" (in Danish). Museum of Copenhagen. Retrieved 2014-06-10.
  4. ^ "Messerschmidts Garveri" (in Danish). Kulturministeriet. Retrieved 15 December 2020.
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