20 March 2018
This photo was taken today when walking back along the quayside at Islands Brygge on the east side of the harbour.
There had actually been snow in the morning and it had been cold enough to settle but at lunch time the cloud lifted and by mid afternoon the sun was out … low but surprisingly warm and people came out to make the most of it.
It’s been a grey and dull Spring where February and March in Copenhagen can be clear with blue skies … cold but bright. So far this year there have not be many opportunities to sit outside and people who live in Copenhagen do sit outside … they take ownership of the streets at every opportunity and the city and the planners know that and wherever possible provide seating … so here it's a long curved bench with a high back to keep off the wind and trap the sun.
This is far from being a new use for street space ... using public space for leisure or exercise or just for sitting to watch the World go by is basically the way people here have worked out to live in a tightly-packed urban space so there are paintings in the National Gallery from the 18th century that show the citizens of Copenhagen promenading on the ramparts or sauntering across the squares.
This area along the south part of the harbour - in front of a line of large apartment buildings from about 1900 - was busy commercial wharfs through the 1950s and 1960s but as the port facilities were moved out then the area was made into a very popular harbour-side park. Close to here is the harbour swimming area that is used all through the year - with a temporary sauna there in the winter - and the wide areas of grass on either side of this sitting area are used for sport, outdoor exhibitions and events.