My dad just visited me in Stockholm, and besides the touristic visits to Gamla Stan and Stockholm City Hall, he wanted to see how real Stockholmers live: Out of Stockholm. When taking the metro’s red line from the city center, Aspudden and Örnsberg are the second and third stops after Hornstull, the westernmost station in Södermalm. While Aspudden dates back more than a hundred years, most of the buildings in Örnsberg were built during the 1940s, and therefore feature less impressive architecture. Nowadays, these two areas are forming one continuous urban region, from which one can reach the city within few minutes with the metro or 15 minutes with the bike.
The area is built around one main street - Hägerstensvägen. It is a relatively wide street, with one car track in each direction, dedicated bike paths and convenient sidewalks. Unfortunately, not all buildings here were built with storefronts, so some parts of area’s main street are dull and boring, even during a sunny sunday morning. The differences between the older part of the street (Aspudden) to the newer part (Örnsberg) are pretty clear. Just take a look at the picture below - same street, different feeling.
Behind Hägerstensvägen, it’s more of the same. Like many of Stockholm’s suburbs, the residential buildings in Aspudden/Örnsberg are built in low density, low-rise and surrounded by a lot of green. Lately, modern houses were constructed in Örnsberg, close to the industrial region in the eastern part of the neighborhood. These new residential buildings will not become vibrant in the future, since they don’t feature stores or offices, but they add to the region’s density, potentially making Hägerstensvägen even more attractive.
Well, it’s not the city center, but it can’t get much better outside the city center. There is one busy main street, and a few smaller streets coming out of it, accomodating cozy cafes, shops and offices. In the eastern part of the area one can even find an industrial site.
Aspudden/Örnsberg is one of the closest neighborhoods to the Stockholm city center. As I wrote before, one can conveniently cycle over Liljeholmsbron (The Liljeholm Bridge) and reach the city center in less than 20 minutes. Moreover, the metro’s red line is just few stops from the city center.
Street Life 4/5
Don’t expect to find here the busy Birger Jarlsgatan or trendy Nytorget. At the end of the day, it’s only one commercial street, surrounded by many residential buildings. When living in Stockholm’s suburbs, many times the only option to experience real street life is to go to the city. Therefore, we should not take it for granted that Aspudden/Örnsberg offers its residents a decent lively street.
(Pictures: Lior Steinberg)