Architect
Arto Sipinen
Competition
1981
Completion
1986
Gross area
7000 m²
Category
Assembly buildings
Tags
brick competition concert culture glass library multipurpose stone white

The design of Imatra cultural centre is based on the entry that won the design competition in 1981. The centre is situated in Mansikkala, the administrative centre of the town of Imatra, to the south of the Town Hall and the adjacent square.

The Town Hall, completed in 1980 (Arto Sipinen and Mane Hetzer), represents 1960s Constructivism. The cultural centre, completed in early 1986, reflects today’s more varied architectural ideas.

The first stage of the cultural centre contains the main library, a concert and congress hall, premises for the music school, a teaching material centre and the culture office. The second stage will provide facilities for the town theatre, whose foyer will connect with the foyer of the concert hall.

The largest room in the library is the main hall, 700 sq.m. The children’s department is 400 sq.m in size, containing a book hall, reading room and story-telling room. The music library, equipped with up-to-date music reproduction apparatus, is placed on the Vuoksi side, giving it a fine view. TH three library clubrooms, which have their own entrance and foyer, can be combined into a space with a stage seating around a hundred.

The music school will have twenty sound-proof classrooms. The larger group teaching room, which can be partitioned into two, is a multi-purpose room, so it can also serve as a rehearsal room or a small concert hall.

The concert hall seats 550, 120 in the balcony. The stage can accommodate a symphony orchestra with chorus, a large light music orchestra or a ballet group. For congress use, the hall is fitted with PA and audiovisual equipment, writing desks and interpretation equipment. The acoustics have been designed for concert use.The outside auditorium, placed alongside the Vuoksi, can be used in summer for park concerts, meetings and other such events.

The elevations of the cultural centre are in white quartz sand brick. The ground floor elevations of the square side elevation are in the type of grey granite used in the Town Hall. The upper parts of the large windows have white sun blinds. The interior is dominated by light birch, white surfaces and green plants.

Arto Sipinen was assisted by Arto Kiviniemi and Timo Mertsalmi.

Source: Finnish Architectural Review 1/1987

Location

Virastokatu 1, Imatra
61.1919797, 28.7792634

Images

Kansalaistori square and library entrance, Imatra Cultural Centre
Kansalaistori square and library entrance, Imatra Cultural Centre (© Arto Kiviniemi / MFA)
Part of the elevation to the town hall, Imatra Cultural Centre
Part of the elevation to the town hall, Imatra Cultural Centre (© Arto Kiviniemi / MFA)
Night view from the Vuoksi, Imatra Cultural Centre
Night view from the Vuoksi, Imatra Cultural Centre (© Jukka Ranta / MFA)
Entrance lobby, Imatra Cultural Centre
Entrance lobby, Imatra Cultural Centre (© Arto Kiviniemi / MFA)
View into the library and lower lobby, Imatra Cultural Centre
View into the library and lower lobby, Imatra Cultural Centre (© Arto Kiviniemi / MFA)
View from the upper lobby, Imatra Cultural Centre
View from the upper lobby, Imatra Cultural Centre (© Arto Kiviniemi / MFA)
View from the reading room, Imatra Cultural Centre
View from the reading room, Imatra Cultural Centre (© Arto Kiviniemi / MFA)
Concert hall, Imatra Cultural Centre
Concert hall, Imatra Cultural Centre (© Arto Kiviniemi / MFA)
Site plan, Imatra Cultural Centre
Site plan, Imatra Cultural Centre (© Arto Sipinen)
Floor plan of the ground floor, Imatra Cultural Centre
Floor plan of the ground floor, Imatra Cultural Centre (© Arto Sipinen)