152 Rainy Days: Gothenburg Strives to Turn Rain into an Attraction and Artistic Outlet


Due to its geographical position, Gothenburg in Sweden has the four seasons: summer, autumn or fall, winter and spring. There is no rainy season like in tropical countries but there is rain during many days of the year. According to an expert, Gothenburg has 152 rainy days. The rain is not like cyclone or hurricane but could be a drizzle, or short spell of pouring rain and it is over. And, when it rains in Gothenburg, there are rainbows, at times double rainbows, too.


Rain Gothenburg: It is a unit under the City of Gothenburg or Göteborgs Stad which combines culture, design and innovation to make Gothenburg more beautiful, interesting and functional when it rains. The object of it is to make ‘Gothenburg the best city when it rains’. RAIN GOTHENBURG as creative force was an event organised in this autumn and participated by Jens Thomas Ivarsson, artistic leader and Magnus Mott. The event focussed on what to do when it almost rains on every third day in Gothenburg in the backdrop of climate change and rise in rainfall, and how Gothenburg should become a role model as a rain city.

The mission for RAIN GOTHENBURG is for the city to be experienced as a creative and attractive destination. How can this experience be strengthened based on the heavy rainfall and ongoing climate change? And how can rain and storm-water management interact with architecture, art and design in a successful way?

Jubileumskickoff: 26 April 2018: Glen Nivert (in the centre) with Niki Arias

During the Jubilieumskickoff, organised by the city administration, on Thursday 26 April 2018, Glenn Nivert from Kretslopp och Vatten, spoke about rain and Rain Gothenburg. He informed that it rains for 152 days in a year, and ‘how to make it more like an event or to be able to feel the water for example when you drive’. In an interview he said that there is a cosy factor around the rain. “Not able to don’t do things because it is raining or perhaps it is raining that you always have an exit plan. And when it is raining you are looking for things that only happens when it is raining,” he noted and that was what they were planning to do, to be able to do things when it rain in Gothenburg. “We are looking for, for example, to make dry places but also finding a place at the same time make a rain – sustainable. To use the rain and the force with the rain to make something happen, be creative with that by creating a design we can make it interesting.”

“Water in its lightest form – gas. One litre of water makes 1700 litres of steam. This is how beautiful it is before it falls as rain. We welcome every drop.” – Rain Gothenburg


The Volvo Ocean Race organizers observed IN 2018: “This place is seriously north – the most northern stop on the race route. At this time of year there is 18 hours of daylight! You will definitely need that jacket though. The daily average is around 15C, but it can range as high as 30C during the day and drop as low as 10C at night. And as this is the west coast, you can also expect some rain. So better make it waterproof.”

Rainfall adaptation, developing prototypes of smaller projects and applying them to bigger projects, water collection from rain, climate-change adaptation, making creative and artistic projects in the public spaces are some of the aspects the City of Gothenburg is striving to do through its RAIN GOTHENBURG – to brand itself as the best city when it rains.