Thousands of small apartments are needed in Oslo to address housing shortage

Frazer Norwell
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Thousands of small apartments are needed in Oslo to address housing shortage
Some 5,000 new smaller apartments are needed in Oslo to address a shortage of homes for young people. Pictured is an apartment block in Oslo. Photo by Hans Ott on Unsplash

Over the next five years, some 5,000 new one-room apartments will need to be built in Oslo to address a housing crisis for young people, one of the country’s largest developers has said.

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Rising rents and a shortage of smaller apartments are making it difficult for young people to get on the property ladder in Oslo, the newspaper Dagens Næringsliv reports.

“There is a massive need to build smaller apartments. In reality, the Oslo politicians have removed the first rung on the housing ladder,” Andreas Martinussen, CEO of the housing development company Nordr said, told the newspaper.

He said that the city should set a target to build 5,000 small apartments and studios in the city.

“A goal should be set to build 5,000 new one-room apartments of a maximum of 25 square meters in Oslo over the next five years,” he said.

Currently, this would be impossible as the city prohibits the construction of any apartments under 35 square metres. Furthermore, 35 percent of homes must be between 35 and 50 square meters, while 40 percent must be larger than 80 square metres.


Governing Mayor of Oslo, Raymond Johansen, had previously proposed to drop these building standards for a period, but the policy was voted down.

He said that more homes for single-person households were needed as half the city residents lived on their own.

“Who builds homes for them? Many good things have happened in recent years with new solutions for compact homes with smart solutions. There is no reason why a one-room apartment should be synonymous with poor housing quality. On the contrary, it will give people housing that is actually adapted to their living situation,” Martinussen said.



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