Helsinki-based practice AOR have presented designs for a church in the Finnish town of Ylivieska which also doubles as a bridge spanning the Kalajoki River. The proposal, which was awarded a shared third prize in an open competition, intends to "revive the historical role of the church as a dominant building in the river landscape."
According to the architects, the building would connect the two sides of the river thereby creating a pedestrian connection across the rapids below. With a "strong symbolic character that brings people together both spiritually and physically," the church would add "a new historical layer to the sequence of existing bridges" in the town.
"The building mass is higher towards the old church and lower on the opposite side of the river. The dynamic building shape creates a strong gesture towards the old church and marks the main entrance of the new church. The lower part of the church creates an easily approachable access to the multifunctional hall used for meetings, seminars and as a dining hall for the elderly. The parish hall is located in the centre of the building and above the river, with panoramic views towards the rapids of Hamarinkoski creating a dramatic background for the altar."
Location84100 Ylivieska, Finland
Design TeamErkko Aarti, Mikki Ristola, Arto Ollila, Kuutti Halinen, Pyry Kantonen, Meri Wiikinkoski