Pleasant, elegant, and timeless workspaces for all employees. These were some of the starting points that, according to architect Risto Virkkunen, outlined the design of the administration building and plant office at the Hanhikivi peninsula.
“Such a site is always a great challenge for an architect. Nowadays, companies seldom build separate head offices, because most of them are located in properties with other tenants to lower the costs and keep the operations flexible,” Virkkunen says.
Virkkunen & Co Architects Ltd have been involved in the Hanhikivi 1 project from the very beginning. The architectural firm has handled the overall design of the site, the general architectural appearance of the power plant, and Fennovoima’s buildings, such as the gate building and the training building.
The administration building will be constructed first
Fennovoima and Lehto Group signed a preliminary agreement on the administration building and the plant office in late September. The final contract is estimated to be signed by the end of this year.
In practice, the administration building will be the most important individual building in Fennovoima's scope of supply. The administration building will be used as an office by Fennovoima’s employees during the construction and operation of the plant.
The plant office will be an office for the operating personnel with sanitary premises for plant maintenance personnel.
“We received several fine offers for both the construction and building services engineering work. Lehto Group’s development proposals and overall solution led to the decision in their favor. We already have detailed plans for the buildings. Lehto Group will finalize these plans and implement them,” explains Juha Nurmi, the director of Fennovoima.
The value of the contract is approximately EUR 30 million. The combined surface area of the buildings will be some 17,900 square meters.
Construction of the administration building will start in the spring of 2019 at the earliest. Before that it needs to be decided where the different parts of the nuclear power plant will be situated in the area. The timetable for building the plant office will be confirmed later.
Aluminum and glass exterior face
According to architect Risto Virkkunen, the main idea behind the entire site’s design was a gradual change of the artistic style and materials of the buildings the closer to the power plant you get. The buildings farther away will be made of wood and will be smaller in scale, while the buildings close to the power plant will be larger and the exterior faces of many of them will be metal.
The same idea continues in the administration building. The exterior face of the five-story building will be made from aluminum plates, some of them perforated. The exterior faces of the two lowermost floors will be glass. The long exterior faces of the building’s office floors will be rhythmical due to several sizes of window elements.
Subdued colors and Finnish wood will be used in the spacious indoor premises. The office and conference rooms have also been designed with functionality in mind.
“The administration building will be placed at a location that offers the employees as good a view of the sea as possible”, Virkkunen says.
According to Virkkunen, the cafeteria and entrance lobby will also be on the lowermost floor behind tall glass walls.
Pleasant working environment for decades to come
Once complete, the administration building will be the everyday working place for some 210 Fennovoima employees. It will also be used by guests.
Virkkunen says that the plan is to create working conditions where both new and old Fennovoima employees will feel right at home from the first day.
“The goal is a functional and comfortable site that will feel good for decades to come. Flexibility and modifiability have naturally been taken into account in the indoor premises,” Virkkunen says.
The experienced architect is of the opinion that the design of a modern industrial area must be based on the users and personnel.
“In the next few years, a large number of Fennovoima’s employees will move to the Pyhäjoki region. That is why the administration building must reflect the values of the company. It must also meet the high expectations people have when moving to a new place,” Virkkunen emphasizes.
Developer of the entire area
Virkkunen & Co Architects are in charge of the overall design of the site, the general architectural appearance of the power plant, and Fennovoima’s buildings. The main gate building was completed last year.
A two-story training building was completed as the first piece of the large-scale project in 2016. It will be the landmark and calling card of the Hanhikivi 1 site until the administration building is completed.
Behind the exterior face cladding made from untreated larch there is an unassuming, modern building of almost 1,200 square meters. The inspiration for the design came from stacked shipping containers. In addition to an entrance lobby and training rooms, it includes offices for Fennovoima employees and customer service facilities for the authorities. In the next few years, some 23,000 employees will be trained in this building.
Some of the glass surfaces on the second floor of the training building have been covered with wooden latticework. When seen from the outside, the building seems to open or close, depending on from which direction you look at it.
Administration building and plant office
Overall design, building design, and BIM coordination:
- Virkkunen & Co Architects Ltd.
- Construction design: WSP Finland Oy.
- Building services engineering design: Granlund Oy.
- Administration building approximately 8,500 floor square meters, total floor area some 10,700 m2.
- Plant office approximately 6,500 floor square meters, total floor area some 7,200 m2.
Basic structure and exterior face:
- Composite column structure. Intermediate floors hollow-core slabs, DELTABEAM® composite beams.
- Exterior face clad with aluminum plates.
The buildings combined will include workspaces for some 300 people.