Docked icebreakers are an essential part of the Katajanokka shore environment. The new headquarters of Arctia Shipping Ltd. is placed in a floating office building in front of the listed main building of the Finnish ministry of Foreign Affairs which was originally designed by C.L.Engel.
PROJECT: ICEBREAKERS HEAD QUARTERS
CLIENT: ARCTIA SHIPPING LTD
AREA: 950 sqm
ARCHITECT: K2S ARCHITECTS LTD.
immo Lintula, Niko Sirola & Mikko Summanen
CONSTRUCTION DESIGNER: Eero Kotkas
The horizontal massing and customized black steel facades relate to the black hulls of the adjacent ice breaker ships. The headquarters building can be seen as one the vessels. The interior of the black “steel ship” is constructed of lacquered wood which related to earlier ship building traditions. The facades of the building are made of customized wave pattern steel profile. There is a gradient and abstract pattern perforated on the steel profiles which relates to ice crystals and sailor textile patterns.
The building was completed on a shipyard in western Finland and towed to site. There is a water ballast system which will maintain the floor level of the office building in the same level as the dock.
“In architecture, every song must count.” say K2S Architects. The dynamic trio from Helsinki started as a grunge band and went on to become key members of a new generation of architects in Finland – the first to depart from the modernist canon.
Today, their work is based on the conviction that good architecture touches the human soul, and does not submit to dogmas or a signature style. To Mikko Summanen, Kimmo Lintula and Niko Sirola, the Finnish word for roots – “juuret” – is essential. Their design philosophy is guided by principles of materiality and its sensory aspects, the notion of context, Finnish building traditions and the fourth, innovative dimension.