Nov
23

OOPEAA is working on a future vision for the Seinäjoki Centre in collaboration with Gehl

posted on November 23rd 2017 in News

The City of Seinäjoki has commissioned OOPEAA in collaboration with Gehl – Copenhagen to work on a plan to provide a framework for the future development of the Seinäjoki Centre.
As the first part of creating a vision for the future of the Seinäjoki Centre, OOPEAA is working on an analysis of the current challenges and future potential of the area through a set of participatory workshops together with representatives of the city. The analysis will be ready at the end of the year and it will provide the foundation for future work on the vision to continue next year. The aim is to create a master plan for the central parts of Seinäjoki and a set of guidelines for the development of the city in the long run. The vision puts people at the center of the planning work. The goal is to create a livable and sustainable city that provides a good framework for quality of life for the citizens of Seinäjoki.

OOPEAA brings to the project its expertise and vision in shaping sustainable buildings and urban environments, while Gehl Architects, a world-leading consultant in integrated urban solutions for making “cities for people”, will share its tools for activating urban life through innovative, participatory and people centered spatial solutions.
As part of the project there will be a series of workshops organized with the goal of facilitating the creation of a common vision for Seinäjoki city centre through an open dialogue involving the different stakeholders in a shared process.

The first workshop between OOPEAA, Gehl and representative of the City of Seinäjoki took place on November 13, 2017. The carefully prepared workshop provided a great occasion to meet, discuss and share ideas and envision tools for developing the future of Seinäjoki city centre together. After introductory presentations by Anssi Lassila of OOPEAA and David Sim of Gehl People, the participants worked in groups on envisioning ideas for the future development of Seinäjoki and creating an action plan with actions to be implemented in the short term, medium term and long term.

Some key themes that arose from the discussion were about integrating light and art in the city environment, providing more opportunities for activities in order to create an “all-year city”, balancing transport modes through prioritization of bicycles, and creating a new approach to provide diversity in housing and integrating green elements and cozy living spaces in the public spaces of the city. As a common thread in all proposals there was a positive attitude towards the city. While it was noted that in the long term Seinäjoki needs more flexible housing solutions, a redesign of some strategic street-links, a new multifunctional station area and better services for families and young people as well as elderly people with green facilities that allow opportunities for all to actively enjoy them, many short-term and “software” ideas could be implemented already in the next two years.

Some of the proposals for actions to be implemented in the short term included ideas for changing the speed limits to balance car and pedestrian traffic, activating the ground floors with pop-up spaces for young people, activating key areas with street art and lights, providing better and more interactive information through apps and online platforms, fostering public transportation through focused pilots (e.g. a free bus card trial), and installing free wi-fi points and electric sockets for charging phones and laptops in open spaces in order to enable the possibility of spending more time outdoors whether for work or play.

The Future Vision for the Seinäjoki Centre is a process commissioned and developed by the Urban Planning Department of Seinäjoki City in collaboration with OOPEAA Office for Peripheral Architecture – Seinäjoki and Gehl – Copenhagen.

For more information about the project, click here.

Nov
17

OOPEAA receives shared third place in the competition for Ylivieska Church

posted on November 17th 2017 in News

The open architecture competition for the new Ylivieska Church was organized by the Ylivieska parish and it was open to participants in Finland and the rest of the European Union. The assignment was to design a new church to be built after the old wooden church from 1786 was lost in a fire in 2016. The competition site is located in the center of the town of Ylivieska in a landscape of cultural and historical value by the Kalajoki river.

OOPEAA’s entry ‘Kooda’ received a shared third place in the competition. Out of a total of 214 entries, seven were nominated for prizes: in addition to one winning entry, two entries received a shared third place and four received honorary mentions. No second prize was awarded. A total amount of 75 000 euros was given out to the winners in shares varying according to placement.

The assignment was to create a functional concept of high architectural quality for a church building and a parish hall that works well in harmony with the surrounding landscape and offers potential for further development of the area while also serving as a landmark for the town.

In addition to designing a new church that resonates with the tradition of Christian church building, the competition assignment also included the task of addressing the surrounding landscape with the ruins of the burnt down old church, the graveyard for war heroes and the parkland around the church. The assignment also asked to take into consideration the traffic arrangements serving the needs of the visitors as well as maintenance and service needs for the church and the parish.

Kooda, the entry by OOPEAA was judged by the jury to manifest a high level of professional quality with its simple and strong church building with a saddle roof and a tall, sharp and slender belfry standing on pillars.

The jury for the competition was composed of six representatives of the parish as well as four architects, two of them nominated by the Finnish Association of Architects.

For more information on the competition for the New Ylivieska Church, see – place a hyperlink to the competition documents here.

For more information on Kooda, the competition entry by OOPEAA, see the project description here.

 

Nov
08

Anssi Lassila is speaking today at the Nordic Architecture Fair in Gothenburg

posted on November 8th 2017 in News

Anssi Lassila

Finnish Wood: Past and Future

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

10:00 – 10:45

Nordic Architecture Fair

Scene G 1

Svenska Mässan, Mässans gata, Gothenburg

In the Nordic region wood has been used as a building material for tens of thousands of years. Anssi Lassila recounts what he has learnt from traditional construction methods and how this has helped him create innovative solutions for the future.

The lecture will be followed by a panel discussion under the theme of Country Life on Scene G3. Anders Nyquist – architect, founder and principal Eco Cycle Design, Njurunda, Anssi Lassila – architect, founder and principal OOPEAA (Office for peripheral architecture), Helsinki, Christian Broen – project leader Dansk Byplanlaboratorium, Copenhagen, Hlédis Sveinsdottir – architect, co-founder and principal EON arkitektar, Reykjavík, and Sixten Rahlff – architect, co-founder and principal 3RW arkitekter, Bergen will discuss issues of sustainability related to the relationship between urbanization and the countryside.

The Nordic Architecture Fair is a two-day event that brings together architects, town planners, property developers and building contractors to discuss one of today’s most pressing questions: What kind of society do we want in the future, and how will it function?

Nordic Architecture Fair is organized by The Swedish Exhibition and Congress Center. It is a dedicated Nordic exhibition, conference and meetings event for cutting edge architecture and urban planning. There are four areas of focus Architecture and Urban planning, Digital building, Innovative materials and Smart buildings. The speakers include Helle Juul, MD, Juul & Frost.,Gert Wingårdh, MD, Wingårdhs Arkitektkontor, Gro Bonesmo, Space Group, Monica von Schmalensee, MD, White Arkitekter, Sima Zangiabadi, Head of Business Development, PEAB, Lars Andrén MD, Momentum, Emma Jonsteg, Charles Renfro and Julien De Smedt.

Nov
06

The Alfred Kordelin Prize awarded to Anssi Lassila of OOPEAA

posted on November 6th 2017 in News

Anssi Lassila of OOPEAA receives the Alfred Kordelin Prize on November 6, 2017.

Alfred Kordelin Foundation supports the sciences, literature, the arts and public education with grants and awards. This time, the foundation gave out grants to support the arts and sciences with the total amount of €3.2 million euros. There were 4 760 applications for grants and 271 grants were given out to researchers, artists and societal agents. In addition, four prizes totalling 120 000 euros acknowledging important contribution of individuals in their fields were awarded to a virologist, Finnish translator, an architect and a journalist in recognition of their exceptional work.

The recipients of the 2017 Alfred Kordelin Prize are Anssi Lassila, architect, Sarah Butcher, professor of microbiology, Kari Klemelä, Finnish translator, Elina Grundström, journalist and author.

In its statement, the board of experts deciding on the nominations for the Alfred Kordelin Prize characterized the work of Anssi Lassila as original and distinctive. They praised his work for a careful consideration of the historical context of the site, an ecological use of materials and a strong sense of materiality of the final building. They noted that his architecture is contemporary in its expression yet also rooted in the tradition of Finnish craftsmanship.

The Alfred Kordelin General Progress and Education Fund, established in 1918, is one of the oldest foundations in Finland operating in the Finnish language. Alfred Kordelin’s (1868-1917) idea was that ‘work for Finnish culture must be granted support in order to strengthen and deepen it internally, and also to represent Finnishness amongst other nations.’ The Fund’s first grants were awarded in 1920. Since then, the Foundation has provided uninterrupted support to Finnish science, arts, literature and adult education, and promoted internationalization. This year, 2017, marking 100 years since the death of Alfred Kordelin, a total of 5 million euros will be given out by the Foundation in grants and prizes.

For more information on the prize and a list of grant recipients, visit www.kordelin.fi

For a press release by the Alfred Kordelin Foundation, see here.

Oct
25

OOPEAA wins competition for a new church in Tikkurila

posted on October 25th 2017 in News

OOPEAA wins with Lujatalo the alliance completion for the new church in Tikkurila

OOPEAA’s proposal, Church in the City was selected as winner in the competition for a new church in Tikkurila. The church will be built by Lujatalo in alliance with OOPEAA through a collaborative design process in which the architect and the builder develop the project together in a close relationship with the client. Also the competition entry was developed in collaboration between the architect and the builder, and the collaborative process was considered as a factor in the competition evaluation.

Located in the eastern half of the metropolitan area of Helsinki, Tikkurila is the administrative and commercial hub of Vantaa and it has about 220 000 inhabitants. The goal for the Church in the City project is to create a church building that serves the community in its many needs in multiple ways as well as offers office and meeting spaces for social services and parishioners in Tikkurila.

The new church firmly takes its place in a centrally located block in the center of Tikkurila. It is both bold and subtle in its character with the main church hall rising tall and completing the block in a well-balanced dialogue with the surrounding buildings. With a strong presence in the streetscape, it forms an identifying landmark for the neighborhood. In the interiors, the atmosphere is cozy and relaxed and the scale of the building takes the personal experience of people as its starting point.

While the building offers work spaces that support contemporary work styles, it also serves as a meeting place for people in their everyday activities as well as for special occasions. The church hall will seat an audience of 500 in its maximum capacity, with the possibility to divide the space in various ways to accommodate multiple simultaneous activities according to need. There will be workspace for up to 143 people in the building with several meeting spaces of various sizes and levels of openness or privacy to accommodate the people of the neighborhood with a café, a yard to serve as a gathering space in the summer months, and a shop area.

The church is integrated in a block that will also contain an adjoining apartment building that offers social housing and student housing. The Bethania Housing is included as an option to be built concurrently with the church as the project progresses. It will be composed of 185 units in a total of 11 700 layer square meters.

The church is commissioned by the Vantaa Parishes and it is slated to be ready in 2020. The Bethania Housing will be commissioned by the Vantaa Parishes and by HOAS, the Foundation for Student Housing in the Helsinki Region.

For a press release on the competition in Finnish, see here.

For more information on the New Tikkurila Church, see here.

Oct
20

Lonna Sauna and Pihapetäjä Housing by OOPEAA nominated for the Wood Award / Puupalkinto 2017

posted on October 20th 2017 in News

Two projects by OOPEAA, Lonna Sauna and Pihapetäjä Housing have been nominated for the Wood Award / Puupalkinto 2017.

The Wood Award is granted annually as a sign of recognition to a building, interior or structure that represents Finnish wood architecture of the highest quality or in which wood has been applied in a way that advances research and development in construction techniques in a significant way. The prize was given out for the first time in 1994 and it is now awarded for the 20th time. The prize is awarded by the Wood Information Center Finland. The award will be announced on Wood Day / Puupäivä on November 30, 2017 in Helsinki.

You can find all the nominees and vote for your favorite one here.

 

Lonna Sauna

The Lonna Sauna is a new a public sauna located on the small island of Lonna in the archipelago just in front of the city center of Helsinki. It is part of the historical continuum of the tradition of public saunas in Finland. The building was commissioned by the Governing Body of Suomenlinna and it was officially opened to the public in summer 2017.

On the border between urban and nature, between the busy life of the city and the open landscapes on the sea, with views framing the silhouette of the city on one side and opening towards the see on the other, the Lonna Sauna offers people a way to relax and enjoy the nature and the sea. Just a short boat trip away from the city, the Lonna Sauna is part of the unique environment of the island where the man-made meets the natural and enters into dialogue with it. With its wood-burning stove it offers a great bathing experience. It allows the bathers to enjoy the view to the sea while relaxing in the warmth of the sauna.

The compact 190 m2 building is built solely with natural materials with a sculptural pitched roof in zinc plate and a masterfully handcrafted wooden log structure, which is left visible and untreated. Furnished with wood-burning stoves it recreates the calm and almost sacred feeling of the traditional Finnish sauna, while placing it in a new, contemporary architectural frame. The skillful use of larch in the furnishings and the large windows opening on to the archipelago create strong contemporary interiors. The terrace is directly accessible from the sauna rooms and from the outdoor shower space bridging the sauna with the seashore.

More information on the Lonna Sauna here.

 

Pihapetäjä Housing

Completed in summer 2017, Pihapetäjä is the first wooden multi-story apartment building in Joensuu. It was commissioned by the Foundation for the Promotion of Karelian Culture as a response to their desire to build affordable rental housing of high quality in an ecologically responsible manner. The first tenants were welcomed to make their home in the building this summer and it has been well received by the residents. Pihapetäjä is the first of three multi-story wooden apartment buildings to be built in the block over time.

The design is based on the modular principle that was first developed for the Puukuokka Housing Block in Jyväskylä. Here, it was modified to meet the specific requirements of the Pihapetäjä site and its apartment composition.

Ecological Sustainability and Quality of Life

The site at the edge of a pine forest provided a well-suited and attractive context for an apartment building to be built out of wood. The goal for the Pihapetäjä project was to build an apartment building of a human scale in Joensuu. Ecological sustainability and energy efficiency were central defining principles in the project. Pihapetäjä has a carbon footprint that is 40 % smaller during its life cycle than that of a regular apartment building. Solar panels produce energy for the general power grid and for the needs of the building itself. Thanks to the characteristic features of wood as a material, Pihapetäjä offers a great quality of life in a building that it feels good to breathe in.

Research and Development for the Use of Wood in Building

With several pilot projects in the city, Joensuu is today recognized as a pioneer in research and development in exploring the new potential of wood as a material for building and construction. As a readily available material locally, wood presents an important and viable alternative for the development of sustainable construction in the region. The Pihapetäjä building is part of a larger research and development project in the use of wood for building and construction today.

More information on Pihapetäjä Housing here.

Oct
19

Pihapetäjä Housing is the first wooden multi-story apartment building in Joensuu

posted on October 19th 2017 in News

Completed in summer 2017, Pihapetäjä is the first wooden multi-story apartment building in Joensuu. It was commissioned by the Foundation for the Promotion of Karelian Culture as a response to their desire to build affordable rental housing of high quality in an ecologically responsible manner. It has been well received by the residents and all of its units are now occupied. The first tenants were welcomed to make their home in the building this summer. Pihapetäjä is the first of three multi-story wooden apartment buildings to be built in the block over time.

Ecological Sustainability and Quality of Life
The site at the edge of a pine forest provided a well-suited and attractive context for an apartment building to be built out of wood. The goal for the Pihapetäjä project was to build an apartment building of a human scale in Joensuu. Ecological sustainability and energy efficiency were central defining principles in the project. Pihapetäjä has a carbon footprint that is 40 % smaller during its life cycle than that of a regular apartment building. Solar panels produce energy for the general power grid and for the needs of the building itself. Thanks to the characteristic features of wood as a material, Pihapetäjä offers a great quality of life in a building that it feels good to breathe in.

Modular Principle
The design is based on the modular principle that was first developed for the Puukuokka Housing Block in Jyväskylä. Here, it was modified to meet the specific requirements of the Pihapetäjä site and its apartment composition.

In response to an identified need in the area for studio apartments of relatively spacious character as well as for three room apartments with an efficiently arranged layout, Pihapetäjä is organized around these two apartment types. All units, including the smallest ones, have a retracting balcony. This has made it possible to create a glazed semi-public zone between the exterior and interior of the building. The retracting balconies also afford the apartments with generous views into the surrounding forest landscape.

In the heart of the building there is a spacious hallway that gets wider towards both ends. The building services engineering is integrated in the walls between the apartment units and the hallway. The central hallway was finished on site while the apartment units were built with prefabricated volumetric modular elements prepared in a controlled factory environment. The studios are composed of one element each and the larger units of two elements each.

Research and Development for the Use of Wood in Building
With several pilot projects for stadiums, large hall spaces and for office buildings, Joensuu is today recognized as a pioneer in research and development in exploring the new potential of wood as a material for building and construction. As a readily available material locally, wood presents an important and viable alternative for the development of sustainable construction in the region.

The Pihapetäjä building is part of a larger research and development project in the use of wood for building and construction today. As part of the ongoing research project, information on the residents’ experience of living in the building will be collected over a ten-year period of time. Also technical data will be collected and monitored over time with the help of sensors installed in the building. This information will be used to assess the long-term effects of wood on the quality of life and of the performance of wood as a material in large-scale buildings over time.

Alongside with the Foundation for the Promotion of Karelian Culture also the Karelia Institute and the University of Eastern Finland were partners in the development phase of the Pihapetäjä project.

More information on Pihapetäjä on OOPEAA website here or on Puulehti here.

Sep
11

Anssi Lassila lecturing at the Fay Jones School of Architecture on September 11, 2017

posted on September 11th 2017 in News

Anssi Lassila will present a lecture at the Fay Jones School of Architecture in Fayetteville, Arkansas as part of the Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design lecture series.

Anssi Lassila
Scale, Light and Material
Monday, September 11, at 4:30 pm
Ken and Linda Sue Shollmier Hall
Room 250 of Vol Walker Hall
University of Arkansas campus
Fayetteville, Arkansas

In his lecture, titled “Scale, Light and Material,” Lassila will present several works by his office, from his first project, the Kärsämäki Shingle Church, to some of the most recent ones, as a way of demonstrating how the aspects of scale, material and light serve as key elements of architecture in his work.

The lecture is the Miller Boskus Lack Architects Lecture in Wood Design and Construction and the 2017 Dean’s Lecture in Nordic Architecture, in promotion of the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program.

Drawing from his extensive experience in working with wood in architecture, Anssi Lassila discusses the material qualities of wood and the ways in which they find expression in defining the structural framework of a building. Special attention is given to exploring the potential of wood as a sustainable solution in architecture and construction.
New techniques and new ways of handling wood as a material for building open up new possibilities in flexibly customized standardization today, for example through the use of a modular system of prefabricated volumetric elements of cross-laminated timber in creating multi-story wooden apartment buildings. However, the lessons that can be learned from the age-old tradition of working with wood continue to offer us a valuable source of information and inspiration in exploring new solutions. In his lecture, Anssi Lassila will also reflect on how the Nordic values and sensibilities get expressed in his architecture.

The Fay Jones School of Architecture is pursuing continuing education credits for the lecture through the American Institute of Architects.

The public is invited to attend. Admission is free, with limited seating.

For more information, contact 479-575-4704 or fayjones.uark.edu.

Sep
06

OOPEAA to receive the Spotlight Prize 2017

posted on September 6th 2017 in News

The ninth annual Spotlight Prize will be awarded to OOPEAA. Founder and Director Anssi Lassila will visit Houston on Wednesday, September 6, 2017 to accept the prize and give a lecture at The MATCH, Houston at 7 pm. Admission is free and open to the public.

Spotlight: The Rice Design Alliance (RDA) Prize celebrates the work of emerging architects from the U.S. and elsewhere in the world. This award highlights the work of exceptionally gifted architects at an early stage in their professional careers. This year the Board of Directors of the Rice Design Alliance unanimously selected OOPEAA as the 2017 Spotlight Award recipient in full recognition of the outstanding and inspiring work of the office.

In his lecture Anssi Lassila will share his thoughts on architecture and on the process of creating architecture. He will present a selection of the work of the office from its early years all the way to the present day as a way of illustrating how his thinking about architecture and the values behind the work of the office are reflected in their buildings.

 Find more information on the Spotlight Prize 2017 here and here

  

Aug
30

Suvela Chapel Wins the Accessibility Award of the Year 2017

posted on August 30th 2017 in News

The Suvela Chapel has been chosen as the winner of the Accessibility Award of the Year 2017 awarded by the Espoo Disability Council.

The Accessibility Award was established in 2014 and it has been awarded annually since then making this the fourth time it was given out. The award aims to recognize a service, company, community, realized idea, person, building or activity in the city of Espoo that has made a significant contribution to making services accessible to us all and to facilitating easy physical access to them.

This year there were 14 nominations for the award. The Suvela Chapel was chosen the winner, and the Kino Tapiola, the Sello Shopping Center and the transportation service of the Espoo Disability Services received honorary mentions. The award was given out by Jukka Mäkelä, Mayor of Espoo in the Espoo Day celebration on August 25, 2017.

The Suvela Chapel by OOPEAA was commissioned by the Espoo parish union and it is used jointly by the Parish of Suvela, the Swedish Parish of Suvela, and the City of Espoo. It offers an easily approachable and accessible space with a human scale and an inviting atmosphere. It provides a home base for many different organizations forming a dynamic place of activity. It is a meeting place that serves the entire community.

The chapel is centrally located in Suvela and it is easily accessible by public transportation. Accessibility has been carefully considered in the design and realization of the building. All functions and services are placed on one level and there is easy access from the chapel lobby to the spaces for the youth as well as to the spaces used by the community park and the kindergarten. The activities and services provided by the chapel also reflect a commitment to accessibility in the multicultural community. The staffis helpful and dedicated to creating an atmosphere that promotes accessibility and openness.

The chapel with its the adjoining community park was inaugurated in September 2016 and it has been well received by the community.

For information on the Accessibility Award in Finnish, see here.

For more information on the Suvela Chapel, see here and here.