In the middle of Lundagård is the AF Borgen building – the heart of the AF Family and the epicentre of student life in Lund. The building has now been modernised and renovated and is ready in its revamped form to provide space for the students’ creativity. The renovation was enabled by a unique joining of forces that has engaged the whole of Lund including, of course, AF Bostäder.
The AF Family, which consists of the Academic Society (AF), AF Borgen and AF Bostäder is a key element in the students’ everyday lives. Together, the Academic Society, student unions and student nations constitute Studentlund, an association that provides access to the whole of Lund’s student life in one and the same membership.
“Student life is a significant factor when students choose where to study,” says Henrik Krantz, CEO of AF Bostäder. “Lund offers Sweden’s best student life, with a fantastic spirit of community. Membership of Studentlund is unique and there is no other place to study that can match such an offering.”
AF Borgen was built in 1851 and has since provided space for a wide range of student activities, such as sport, radio, costume rental, carnival, art, writing circles, debate and, of course, student revues. The building also houses business activities such as a café and restaurant, and is a venue for parties, conferences and other events.
“Over the years, AF Borgen has grown into an arena not only for students, but also for Lund’s business community and cultural life,” says Stina Åkesson, CEO of AF Borgen. “The halls and stages are well known and many people have unforgettable memories from here. In recent years the need for renovation has become increasingly clear. In a relatively short time, with full activities on the premises, we have now carried out renovation work that should not really have been possible, practically or financially. It is all due to a unique joining of forces involving companies, organisations and private individuals in Lund.”
“Alfa Laval, the Crafoord Foundation, Grenspecialisten, Lund University, Sparbanken Skåne through Sparbank Foundation Finn, Caroline and Paul Sverdrup, Tetra Laval and AF Bostäder have together donated SEK 66 million for the renovation,” says Stina Åkesson. “The City of Lund has provided support with loans, and private individuals gave an additional SEK 2.2 million for stage equipment, interior fittings and furnishing through the campaign #backaborgen. The commitment is overwhelming and the significance of AF Borgen for Lund, and for all those who have been a part of it, is clear.”
“AF Bostäder is the students’ own housing company and we have had a long relationship with the Academic Society,” says Henrik Krantz. “For us, it was self-evident to secure AF Borgen’s future and contribute to the modernisation of the operations. AF Borgen is the students’ workplace, living room and entertainment centre. It is the Lund brand as a student city.”
“In addition to our donation, we could provide support by acquiring the Aspegren Building from AF Borgen,” says Henrik Krantz. “The Aspegren Building, designed by Hans Westman, is directly adjacent to AF Borgen and was originally student housing. It was a good, long-term, sustainable solution to be able to contribute to the renovation and at the same time have the opportunity to take care of and develop an important part of student life’s cultural heritage.”
AF Borgen has a new stage, a new foyer staircase, an outdoor area facing Lundagård, a new lift and new (and more) toilets and the main hall has been given a face-lift. Behind the scenes, the technical side has been improved and AF Borgen is now an even better and more beautiful meeting place than before.
“There is now a great sense of longing, as all of student life in Lund has waited for this and is ready to start using the building. Now we are looking forward to an easing of the pandemic restrictions so that we can at last welcome the students and test-drive our new AF Borgen at full scale,” says Stina Åkesson.
Latest update June 2, 2021