AOR Architects, a young practice based in Helsinki, have won the commission to design Monio High School and Community Centre in Tuusula, Finland. The project explores an innovative use of timber log building and will be the largest timber log school building in the world after its completion. Consisting of a high school, music institute, and community college, AOR’s proposal combines these different programs in a multi-functional learning and community environment.
As one of the key figures of midcentury Modernism and perhaps Finland's most celebrated architect, Alvar Aalto (3 February 1898 – 11 May 1976) was known for his humanistic approach to Modernism. For his characteristically Finnish take on architecture, Aalto has become a key reference point for architecture in the Nordic countries, and his commitment to creating a total work of art left many examples of his design genius not only in buildings but also in their interior features, including furniture, lamps, and glassware design.
For all those Game of Thrones fans looking to go face to face with a White Walker (or snuggle up like Jon and Dany), here’s your chance: Lapland Hotels Snowvillage in northern Finland has opened its very own Game of Thrones-themed ice hotel, complete with ice-carvings of the show’s best settings and sigils.
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."
Designs by Helsinki-based practice AOR have been selected following an open competition for the extension of Tampere Art Museum, in Finland. The existing building which the museum currently occupies was formerly used as a granary, designed by C. L. Engel and completed in 1838. Most believe it to be the third oldest building in the country. AOR's winning proposal seeks to create "a landmark for the museum" by articulating the urban landscape between nearby Pyynikintori square and adjacent parkland, connecting to and with the existing gallery spaces.
The renovation of the Aalto University Harald Herlin Learning Centre in Otaniemi, designed by NRT Architects in collaboration with JKMM Architects (interiors), has been selected as the winner of the 2017 Finlandia Prize for Architecture. Completed in 2016, the project is the first renovation to be awarded the prize. The original building was completed in 1970 to fit into the Alvar Aalto-designed Otaniemi campus plan.
Not just meatballs and Vikings; Scandinavia has always been the epicentre of design across the world - just look at the growing impact of Bjarke Ingels and Ikea's future living lab SPACE10. To showcase their significant influence, Expedia has illustrated the works of four famous architects from Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden and how they shaped international architectural movements of the 20th and 21st centuries in a collection of posters called Monumental Minds.
Often informed by its harsh climate and stunning landscapes, Nordic design, specifically architecture, has a unique relationship with nature. Photographers of Nordic architecture have benefitted from studying this close connection in their photos that experiment with capturing light, innovative materials, and landscape to create a compelling composition. Below is a selection of images of both public and private architecture by prominent photographers such as Pasi Aalto, Bert Leandersson, Mika Huisman and Åke E: Lindman.
The city of Helsinki has announced the launch of a self-driving bus line that will integrate into the city’s regular transportation service. The service, known as the Helsinki RoboBusLine, is the second phase of a three-year experimentation with autonomous buses as part of the Sohjoa project, an EU-financed venture by the six largest cities of Finland, Finnish universities, and transportation authorities to prepare for new public transit services and autonomous vehicles.
The first phase of the project, debuted in August of last year, saw the implementation of two self-driving electric minibuses capable of traveling at just 11 kilometers per hour, and with an operator on board in case of emergency. The RoboBusLine will take the next step, allowing the bus to travel like a more traditional bus.
The team consisting of ALA Architects, HKP Architects and Ramboll Finland has won an invited competition for the renovation and expansion of Helsinki Airport’s Terminal 2 with their entry titled “City Hall.” Organized by Finnish airport operator Finavia, the competition asked four international firms to create a new airport plan centered around a reenvisioned terminal that will allow the airport to efficiently serve up to 20 million passengers per year.
An environmentally-concious material response by Lukkaroinen Architects, the structural design for the Pudasjärvi Wood Campus in northern Finland highlights the potential of large-scale structural timber.
The project features a primary structure of assembled logs and three types of non-traditional pillars, specially constructed in laminated wood for different areas.
When placed in a historic landscape, contemporary architecture requires a layered approach. It must often strike a respectful, vernacular tone, whilst embracing the innovative, functional hallmarks of a modern building. This balance has particular relevance at Suomenlinna Sea Fortress, located off the coast of Helsinki, Finland. Throughout its 300-year history, it was once occupied by the armies of Sweden, Russia and Finland – a rich history attracting UNESCO World Heritage status, and almost one million annual visitors. The site is more than a museum, however, but a living district of Helsinki with 800 inhabitants and 500 jobs.
Against the prerequisites of past and present, Heikkinen & Kangasaho Architects have combined sharp, functional modernity with respectful, restrained simplicity in a new housing scheme to sit amongst Suomenlinna’s historic fortifications.
The 2016 Venice Biennale may have officially closed in November, but many of its constituent parts continue to have a life beyond the confines of Venice. From Border to Home, the exhibit hosted by the Finnish Pavilion, showcased the results of an international architecture competition between October and November of 2015 that called for residential solutions for asylum seekers that offer both short-term shelter for refugees and long-term impact on the surrounding community. Three winners and four honorable mentions were featured in the exhibition, accompanied by a blog that offered sustained dialogue on the topic from architects around the world. On March 21st, Finland's contribution to the Biennale will finally be concluded with a review of the Biennale's themes and a seminar on the pavilion, hosted in Helsinki. Read on to find out more about the winners and four mentions from the competition that were featured in Finland's From Border to Home pavilion.
The proposal was selected for its “thorough analysis of the city, its history, structure, character, potentials and challenge”, in response to the area’s development as a new residential hub and functional harbor. The competition introduced the notion of maintaining Pargas’ dominant maritime identity, while simultaneously strengthening the city’s character with various urban elements, such as hotels, a beach, saunas, and offices.
Schauman & Nordgren Architects has been announced as the winners of an open competition to redesign the old industrial area of Kangas in Jyväskylä, Finland. The winning proposal, titled “Kangas - City of Gardens,” seeks to build off of the success of a recently completed creative campus located within former paper factory by transforming the surrounding neighborhood into a vibrant live/work district containing over 5,000 new homes, 2000 new workplaces and a new educational campus facility.