Keski-pasila School and Kindergarten

The new Keski-Pasila school and kindergarten is located in a dense urban environment in the centre of a new residential area in Helsinki. Our interpretation of the brief was to divide the building mass into a “trio” to create a more sympathetic child-friendly scale, which in turn generates a variety of interesting playgrounds between the volumes and naturally separated entrance areas for the different age groups. The building mass was placed on the eastern edge of the site, forming a large southwest facing playground and establishing an unobstructed view to the natural park area of “Halkopiipunkallio” beyond. The schoolyard is easily accessible via the public paths and seamlessly connected to the natural forest area of Halkopiipunkallio.

The idea behind the “trio” concept was to provide each educational level - kindergarten, primary school and secondary school - with its own “general learning building”, connected by a shared facilities plinth which would be easily accessible for the community during after school hours.

The heart of the school is designed around a large staircase / auditorium connecting the publicly accessible areas on the ground floor with the special learning spaces, staff area and student care facilities on the first floor. The home bases are then organised in separate “house volumes” on top of the shared plinth. Central light shafts in each volume ensure good daylight conditions in all learning areas and enables visual connections across the different age levels and a feeling of school unity. Particular focus and care was placed on the design of the shared, flexible spill-out learning spaces to enable a variety of group and individual activities to take place simultaneously and harmoniously.

invited competition for a new kindergarten and school
competition year
City of Helsinki
12 130 m2
Office for Peripheral Architecture (Fi), VSU LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTS LTD (Fi), SWECO (Fi)
Minna Riska, Sigbjørn Willemsen, Dagfinn Sagen, Helge Lunder, Sarah Klinge Rønning Hansen, Mari Nysveen Hellum, Hanne Brett, Martin Andal
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