Architects: Lassila Hirvilammi Architects
Location: Jyväskyla, Finland
Chief Architect: Anssi Lassila
Interior Architect: Teemu Hirvilammi
On Site Architect: Jani Jansson
Client: Parish of Jyväskyla
Collaborators: Virve Väisänen, Juha Pakkala, Janne Kähkönen, Matias Topi, Yoshimasa Yamada
Project Area: 1,311 sqm
Project Year: 2008-2010
Photographs: Jussi Tianen
The wish of the Parish of Jyväskylä was to build “a church that looks like a church”. Our proposal was a simple, sculptural form within which all of the church’s different functions could be contained. The design is “of our time”, yet permeated with nods to and re-interpretations of church-building tradition.
The east-west oriented building stands centrally on Kuokkala Square, the focal point of Jyväskylä’s Kuokkala district. The church is roofed and clad in overlapping slate tiles, with wood and copper details around the entrances supplement the overall visual aspect. The church is flanked by a granite stairway and walls which, together with the bell tower on the square, usher visitors towards the main entrance.
The church’s functions are located across three storeys, with the church offices opening directly onto the market square. On the main floor, the church hall and parish meeting hall can be combined to create a shared space onto which the floor’s children’s and youth facilities also adjoin. A gallery houses the organ and cantors’ office.
The church is predominantly wooden. The church ceiling is a combined glulam frame and wooden gridshell construction, which visually integrates the separate hall spaces. The gridshell was assembled and laminated together in-situ in three sections.
Locally sourced spruce has been used throughout the church, from its bearing structures to its interior surfaces and fixtures. The church hall furnishings are in ashwood and the altar furniture is limewood, a species used historically for the carving of wooden icons.