In collaboration with Elke Miedema, MSc.
Fit Finland is a competition entry for the Laakso and Aurora area in Helsinki, Finland for the Europan 12 competition for young Architects in Europe. The competition outline asked for a transformation strategy of the current mono-functional environment of a Hospital and Psychiatry towards a more vibrant multi-functional mix of various types of living and working.
By transforming the old monumental healthcare buildings into multifunctional buildings and moving the current healthcare functions into new buildings. We improve the treatment structure while retaining and revitalizing the old healthcare buildings, which in our opinion are no longer suited for the treatment of patients.
Furthermore we propose a strategy to strengthen the current green structure around the site with the site through the use of additional parks and gardens. By proposing a mix of various functions within the area to create four separate neighborhoods, each with their own identity. By mixing living and working together, we get a more lively use of the area during day and night. By densifiying various parts of the Laakso-Aurora area with several building blocks, each neighborhood gets a more vibrant and intimate character.
Fostering a healthy, social and natural lifestyle is important in Finland and Helsinki and therefore we also add additional communal gardens and running and fitness tracks within the area which also function as connections between the different neighborhoods. Because Healing does not only consist out of getting better in a hospital but also retaining a healthy and social life, within an environment which supports this.
The chosen set of strategies is well presented and the aim for social cohesion and liveliness in the area hardly leaves place for disagreement. As in many proposals the existing campus structure is densified with built volumes that react to their program and but only little to each other and to their position in the whole and the logic of the urban structure is difficult to follow. The many sympathetic ideas presented concerning target groups and activities seem to relate very little to the slightly random city milieu. This sketchiness is visible also from the bird’s-eye views where also the scale becomes strangely obscured. The presentation generally is visually convincing and fun.