Otaniemi Chapel awarded the international Carlo Scarpa prize


On 3rd March, TKK's rector, Matti Pursula, accepted the International Carlo Scarpa Prize for Gardens 2009 . This landscape architecture price was awarded to the Otaniemi Chapel and TKK's Otaniemi campus. The award was granted by Fondazione Benetton Studi Ricerche in Italy. Photo: Matti Kurkela, Kimmo Brandt

The chapel is located in Teekkarikylä (Student Village) in Otaniemi. The student union decided to build, in addition to accommodation, a church in the area. The chapel was inaugurated in 1957. It was destroyed by arson in 1976, but rebuilt subsequently. Today the chapel is owned by the Espoo parish, to which the student union sold it in 1972.

The chapel was designed by Heikki and Kaija Siren. Earlier, a plan for the building had been solicited from Heikki Siren, but that was cancelled, because it was decided to arrange an architectural competition. A daughter of Heikki Siren, Kirsi Aropaltio, told that her father, somewhat offended by the events, had decided not to participate in the competition. However, one night Heikki Siren woke his wife up to make her examine a successful idea that had occurred to him. The chapel was then realized based on Sirens' redeemed competition proposal. The work could not be given any prize, because the building extended past the specified building limits, which was in breach of the competition rules by the Finnish Association of Architects.

In Treviso, Italy, where the foundation is located, a grand award ceremony will be arranged in May and there will be a book published about the object of the award.

More details about the previous awards and the criteria used can be found in the foundation's website: http://www.fbsr.it/eng/pagine.php

Photo: Adolfo Vera

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The award ceremony was held at TKK. From left architect Tom Simons, rector Matti Pursula, Kirsi Aropaltio, pastor Juha Lassila, ambassador Elisabetta Kelescian and director Domenico Luciani.


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