The essence of the building is intended to visually lighten the mass of the roof and curved outer walls . Large, silk screen clad and with each other in different angles double facade wall surfaces divide building mass into smaller pieces . Dark aged copper clad end walls and light weight glass surfaces alternate and create sculptural courtyard spaces.
The building entrances are located at 2nd and 5th floors, of which the latter is a street-level main entrance. Site’s level differences are softened by the slope of the recessed parking hall and stone walls. Yard areas were kept understated. The slopes are covered with evergreen ground cover plants. Pedestrian routes are coated with white crushed stone.
The wing sections are connected by a freely formed central lobby. The lobby floor is punctuated by arched openings, curved glass walls and main staircase. Upon entering the building, you get a splendid unobstructed view of Lake Näsijärvi. Glass surfaces are silkscreen printed glass patterns that filter the incoming natural light. This light together with the curved surfaces create nuanced series of spaces. The building dimensions and shape are revealed in the central lobby, offering varying views in all directions.
The different interior wings are easily identified by color, each wing has its own distinctive color on all the floors. Colorful surfaces have also been used in the central lobby and wing walls between the floors. The building is illuminated upwards between the curved glass walls, which underlines the sculptural form of the building mass in the dark.
The building houses a number of user groups. For example a health center, a dental clinic, a maternity clinic and a rehabilitation clinic. The main auditorium, as well as the private dining room can be rented out outside the office hours.
Colorful surfaces and sculptural design of the building, create a comfortable and vibrant place for the citizens to visit and utilize services.
The Finnish Embassy in Berlin won the Best building in the world prize by Arup World Architecture Awards in Hong Kong in 2001.
The Finnish Embassy is light, transparent and vivid. It stands in contrast to the copper wall which is opaque, dense and mineral. The building is a combination of simplicity and clarity, which creates both Finnish national identity and prominent and timeless surroundings for the activities of the embassy.
The transparent glass façades of the building are covered with slats of larch wood. This wooden latticework acts as a venetian blind. It protects the interior and filters the incoming light. Direct views are provided by opening parts of the lattice. The variety of different positions of the slats gives animation to the façade during the day, with the basic form regained as the slats are closed for the night.
The interior is dominated by a sequence of spaces which traverse the building. It starts from the entrance and goes through a central hall and ends in a small external courtyard. The copper wall behind the courtyard has an opening out to the surrounding townscape. The circulating aluminium stair and the birch covered conference room, which is suspended above the skylit central hall, contribute to the complexity of these spaces.
Photos: Jussi Tiainen
SIGGE Architects submitted design for the Ambassador residence & staff housing complex in Sarajevo, Bosnia & Herzegovina was selected as the first runner-up. The competition was arranged by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The architectural competition was by invitation only and four internationally well-known architecture firms were invited to participate.
SIGGE Architects also won a competition last year for the design of Saudi Ambassadorial residence that will be built in Helsinki, Finland.
The Åbo Akademi Faculty of Arts in Turku has re-located in the city block that was originally an iron factory. The oldest buildings were built in 1856 and the latest in the 1930's. All the existing buildings are protected as historically significant. The building complex is based on the winning entry "Fabrik" for the architectural competition (SAFA) held in 1997.
Renovation and expansion work was realized in four separate parts, first one being the new foundation for its 10 existing and 3 new buildings and the new basement. In the complex all but one building are connected together by glass enclosed ramps and skyways.
The main entry is at the Tehtaankatu street which leads into the courtyard and the main lobby. The main lobby is located in the metal box "masuuni” (blast furnace) building which includes meeting rooms and the auditorium. From the main lobby there are direct connections to faculty offices and the cafe. The library locates in the old metal factory building. The existing large linear spaces function well as the new library. The lowered ceiling was demolished and the beautiful steel structure was exposed. The wide factory building on the Piispankatu side is renovated and the original glass skylight is opened up. In the corner of Piispankatu and Tehtaankatu a new L-shaped building was constructed. Due to architectural clarity in the design, the old and new architecture highlight each other.
Photos: Jussi Tiainen ja Vesa Loikas
The five floors of the town hall circulate around central civic square. The inner walls are all covered with printed glass. The main entrance is on the first floor, which contains the municipal service point, restaurant, the council hall and the meeting rooms. Social security department is located on the second floor. From the same floor there is access to the other municipal services via glazed bridge connecting the town hall with the shopping center where the rest of the municipal service facilities remain. The third floor is for the education department and the municipal administration department is located on the fourth floor. Saunas and a large meeting room are located in a parade spot on the attic floor. From here it is a magnificent view towards the municipal center on three directions.
On the civic square there is the building's sculptural main staircase, which is covered with a lacy, woven copper mesh. The space of the civic square flows through the translucent main staircase to the terrace garden located behind the staircase on the second floor. The terrace opens as high and sheltered to the west.
The council hall, located below the terrace courtyard, is the functional and spiritual heart of the building. It is located as an extension of the civic square and is descending gently towards the ground level. Traditional landscape view opens behind the large windows of the council hall. The walls and the roof of the hall are covered with the same material as the main staircase - woven copper mesh. Space required by the building services is hidden behind the copper mesh.
The building facades are mostly double facades. In front of the actual external wall, glass plates and perforated copper elements have been placed randomly. Perforated copper elements also contribute to reduce solar heat radiation indoors. The other parts of the facade is dark red brick and copper sheet metal. The materials used are classic and durable. In order to use such materials we wanted to emphasize the time-independent position as a public building in the center of Kirkkonummi.
photos: 1-6 Mikael Lindén, 7-10 Jussi Tiainen
"The ASA factory building has retained its identity well. Few new openings have been made in the existing exterior walls. The new use and architecture are revealed in the semi-open courtyard. Adjoining the new entrance an airy, light-flooded hall has been built providing access to other parts of the building: the library, auditorium and work facilities. The systematic and efficient, almost oppressive spatial organisation has gained a fresh new look by the addition of the new entrance."
Extract from Olli-Paavo Koponen's review
Photos: Vesa Loikas
Photos: Vesa Loikas