Design for the conversion of Alvar Aalto's listed woodchip silo into flexible cultural spaces

Schematic design and lighting design 2009, design development 2013-

450 sqm

Kulttuurivoimala / The City of Oulu

Studio Puisto Architects; Emma Johansson, Mikko Jakonen, Sampsa Palva, Heikki Riitahuhta, Willem van Bolderen

Seppo Mäkinen, Snow How; Kaisa Kinnunen, cultural producer

Historic buildings, schematic design, cultural buildings, lighting design

The listed silo building designed in 1931 by architect Alvar Aalto and the factory area surrounding it is the first one of Aalto’s industrial projects. The factory closed down and the area was zoned as housing in the early 1990s when the key buildings of the area were also protected.

The project suggests the silo originally used to store wood chips be renovated and converted into a cultural centre for different types of art for Kulttuurivoimala. The building has three separate silos: the first will house offices, workspaces and an art residence with its own sauna department in addition to a stair and an elevator. The second silo is converted into exhibition galleries, whereas the third one will house a climbing centre together with exhibition spaces. The ground floor and the top floor will have large common gathering spaces. The roof will have a terrace with a unique sea view. The first phase of the silo project, the lighting, was finished in the spring of 2010. We are currently looking for partners for the project under the guidance of cultural producer Kaisa Kinnunen.

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