The iconic Salpausselkä Sports Park has been a venue for sports games for over 100 years, the first international sports games were held there in 1923. It is especially known as a winter sports venue. In the 1970s was the City of Lahti and Ministry of Education initiated a project of a stadium to be built on the bottom of the ski jumping hill for the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships 1978.

The start and finish for the cross-country skiing events were completely rearranged. The announcer’s room and broadcasting and sports official facilities were relocated in the new grandstand building, and new open stands for 20 000 spectators and an electronic results service system were built. Furthermore, 70 metre and 50 jumps were built next to the existing 90-metre jump.

The general plan for the World Ski Championships aimed at constructing a ski stadium similar to the old Salpausselkä ”horseshoe” in which the public surrounded the start and finish area on three sides and the skiers remained visible to the public as long as possible. The general arrangements of the area aimed at making the area suitable as such as a versatile summer sports centre. A sports stadium with a football field and track-and-field competition sites were completed in summer 1979 in the start and finish area for skiing events.

The grandstand contains partly covered seats for over 5000 spectators. The ground floor, on the field level, houses the sports ground changing and washing facilities, gymnasium, storage facilities and working facilities for the town’s maintenance department. The next-door houses indoor track and jumping sites. The grandstand entrances are on the next level. The uppermost level – a cantilever supported by concrete panel columns – is located above this. It houses e.g. offices and a café. Traffic between the different levels moves through four stairway halls and lifts.

The stadium was designed by architects Esko Koivisto, Pekka Salminen and Juhani Siivola (KSS Architects).

Source: Finnish Architectural Review 4/1978

Location

Salpausselänkatu 8, Lahti
60.98298695, 25.63432514

Images

View from the ski jumping tower, Lahti Stadium
View from the ski jumping tower, Lahti Stadium (© Wikimedia Commons)
Stadium seen from the west, Lahti Stadium
Stadium seen from the west, Lahti Stadium (© Wikimedia Commons)
Salpausselkä Games 1979, Lahti Stadium
Salpausselkä Games 1979, Lahti Stadium (© NBA)
View from the ski jumping tower, Lahti Stadium
View from the ski jumping tower, Lahti Stadium (© Pekka Karhunen / MFA)
View over the sports park, Lahti Stadium
View over the sports park, Lahti Stadium (© Teuvo Kanerva / NBA)
Grandstand and ski jumping towers, Lahti Stadium
Grandstand and ski jumping towers, Lahti Stadium (© Simo Rista / MFA)
Ski jumping towers, Lahti Stadium
Ski jumping towers, Lahti Stadium (© Teuvo Kanerva / NBA)
Stadium seen from the east, Lahti Stadium
Stadium seen from the east, Lahti Stadium (© Jarmo Eurasto / MFA)
Detail of the grandstand, Lahti Stadium
Detail of the grandstand, Lahti Stadium (© Simo Rista / MFA)
Site plan, Lahti Stadium
Site plan, Lahti Stadium (© KSS Architects)
Perspective plan, Lahti Stadium
Perspective plan, Lahti Stadium (© KSS Architects)
Section plan of the grandstand, Lahti Stadium
Section plan of the grandstand, Lahti Stadium (© KSS Architects)