Architect
Gullichsen Vormala Architects Timo Vormala
Completion
1999
Gross area
11500 m²
Category
Residential buildings
Tags
block of flats concrete courtyard glass white

The curving building volume encloses the huge former office, now housing block that used to dominate the landscape from in Taivallahti. THe Kesäkatu Housing consists of three curving blocks of flats, built in the late 1990s. The development was designed by Gullichsen Vormala Architects, the principal architect being Timo Vormala. He was assisted by architects Jukka Linko and Susanna Raitanen.

Emphasis on views characterises the façades, and life on the balconies and terraces is openly visible to the passer-by. Architectural details provide associations with old-fashioned park pavilions and the golden era of steamship travel.

A little farther from the shore, the expression becomes more urban. The curving building volume forms a park-like inner courtyard. Parking is underground with access from the edges.

All the flats have something in common, however; an dining and living room area opens towards the view, and large glazed balconies and terraces. The flats extending throughout the frame also have a second balcony on the courtyard side, catching the morning sun.

The four storeys have three flats per landing, while three upper floors have only two. The largest apartments have fireplaces, bigger balconies and terraces.

The main entrances are approached across a terrace which surrounds the entire building, bordered by a natural stone wall. The entrance halls are spacious.

Source: Finnish Architectural Review 4/1999

Location

Kesäkatu 8, Helsinki
60.1793475, 24.9147711

Images

View from the south west, Kesäkatu Housing
View from the south west, Kesäkatu Housing (© Voitto Niemelä / MFA)
View from the south, Kesäkatu Housing
View from the south, Kesäkatu Housing (© Voitto Niemelä / MFA)
View from the courtyard, Kesäkatu Housing
View from the courtyard, Kesäkatu Housing (© Voitto Niemelä / MFA)
View from the courtyard, Kesäkatu Housing
View from the courtyard, Kesäkatu Housing (© Voitto Niemelä / MFA)
Detail of a glass wall, Kesäkatu Housing
Detail of a glass wall, Kesäkatu Housing (© Voitto Niemelä / MFA)
Site plan, Kesäkatu Housing
Site plan, Kesäkatu Housing (© Gullichsen Vormala Architects)
Floor plans, Kesäkatu Housing
Floor plans, Kesäkatu Housing (© Gullichsen Vormala Architects)