Referential plan for the zoning of the historic sawmill island of Varjakka and port on the mainland

Invitational competition 2012 (First prize and commission). Referential plan for zoning 2013-2014.

15400 sqm

The City of Oulu

Architects Sarlin&Sopanen + Studio Puisto Architects; Emma Johansson, Heikki Riitahuhta, Marja Sopanen, Olli Sarlin

Ramboll (landscaping, evaluation of effects), Buro Happold

Urban planning, historic buildings, schematic design, hospitality, wooden construction

This project suggests a new clear character for the area of Varjakka, built on the history of the woodworking industry. The plan made to develop Varjakka supports the year-round attraction of the area located on the seaside of Northern Ostrobothnia and enables the development of the area in various phases. The basis of the structure of the area is a continuous route network that covers the entire area and around which the cottage areas and other buildings are situated. This network is made of visual axes created to connect interesting spots.

The cottage areas will be carefully fitted into the landscape and the surrounding nature and views will be considerately opened towards the shore. The strong seaside character and the valuable nature and landscape of the area play an important role in the project. The activities and services have been placed and sized to conserve the significant nature and landscape of the area, however making the most of the characters of the nature and the landscape, enabling a strong experience in different times of the day and the year.

A varied construction on the site offers alternative accommodation solutions for holiday housing, from small hut-like cottages to larger villas. The typologies make it possible to construct in phases: the smaller cottages can later be completed with tower-like additions or small buildings placed in the gardens, whereas the larger villas can be enlarged by additions placed around the atrium.

All of the new buildings will be built in wood, and they will be realized either as passive houses or active energy houses utilizing renewable energy sources.


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