The Museum of Finnish Architecture, in collaboration with the Finnish Association of Architects (SAFA), has announced the winners of its “From Border to Home” competition, which sought solutions for temporary housing seekers who are awaiting a decision on their refugee status, prior to finding more permanent housing in Finland. Ninety-three entries were submitted from countries around the world including Finland, Sweden, Norway, China, Belarus, the United States, and Brazil, among others. Submitted proposals included solutions that would provide a positive social impact, and also support future ideas about long-term living arrangements.
The jury, comprised of architects, members from the Ministry of the Interior, the Finnish Red Cross, and the Finnish Refugee Council, shortlisted seven entries in the first round of judging. They praised the overall quality of the submissions, stating that they ranged in strategies from tackling national issues to creating new buildings, repurposing old sites, and even transforming housing solutions to digital platforms.
From those, three winners tied for first place, chosen due do their “logical coherence and compelling social impact,” according to the jurors. These entries will be showcased in the Finnish Pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale this upcoming summer.
Code: 181081 – Germany
Team: Duy Tran, Lukas Beer, Ksenija Zdesar, Otto Beer
This proposal focuses on revitalizing vacant office space to meet the housing needs of the refugees. Centered on utilizing existing infrastructure, the design is not only socially feasible for both short term and long term housing, but also represents a solution that can be applied to a variety of scales all over Finland.
Code: 808389 – Italy
Code Name: Society Lab
Team: Cecilia Danieli, Omri Revesz, Mariana Riobom
Society Lab created a mobile app that allows the asylum seekers to find housing, jobs, and language-learning opportunities before they arrive to their destination in Finland. The housing solution is based on already existing free space in cities - it requires no new construction, making it cost and resource efficient.
Code Name: 3 We House Refugees- Finland
Team: Milja Lindberg assisted by Christopher Ardman, A-Konsultit Oy Architects
This proposal aims to create a buddy system in which refugees are paired with natives who help them cope with the everyday life challenges of moving to a new country. Interested Finnish citizens would move to new donor apartments with low cost rent, in which refugees live in a portion of their home for 6-12 months. This design both rethinks building codes and building adaptation, and provides a smooth integration for refugees into society.
Learn more about each of the winning proposals and view the runners-up here.