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Oulu School of Architecture, known as Lafka, moves to new facilities.

The Oulu School of Architecture has moved to completely renovated and upgraded facilities on the Linnanmaa campus. The facilities are located in the former mechanical engineering wing in the eastern part of the campus. At the same time the university's new main entrance 2T was opened.

The teaching of architecture, which had long been taking place in the centre of the city, move to the Linnanmaa campus more than a year ago, setting up in temporary facilities.

”For me personally, the move was a positive surprise”, says the director of the Oulu School of Architecture, Professor Janne Pihlajaniemi.

"With respect to research, there has been a completely different community than there was in the centre. Staying in the temporary premises has affected teaching and studies, but now the new set-up is very good for the study and practice of architecture."

According to Pihlajaniemi the type of facilities in which architecture is studied is by no means irrelevant. The structures, surfaces, air, and spirit of the facilities leave traces in the memory. The aim is to retain the famous Lafka spirit in the new facilities – the interaction between students and teachers and the sense of community.

"Lafka now has a new and great home – one that looks like the school of architecture", Pihlajaniemi says.

Entrance 2T on Erkki Koiso-Kanttilan katu is open again.

In the middle of it all is Agora with its stairs for sitting. The tall Pakkassavu sculpture has been moved here from the cafeteria of the Centre Campus.

Opening seminar brings people together

An opening ceremony and a seminar to celebrate the new space took place on Tuesday, 27 February. At the celebrations former Lafka students told about their current work, their art, what is going on in architecture now, and what their time as students has meant to them. Also appearing at the celebrations were author Anna-Leena Härkönen and Norwegian architect Einar Jarmund.

The Guild of Architecture also passed on its greetings through its chairman Jaakko Ihalainen.

"We are getting facilities that were designed for us."

Students presented flowers to university teacher Petri Aarnio, who has been a sustaining force of the process, working selflessly on behalf of the entire community.

Key elements of the new facilities include a glass façade at the main entrance, a large shared Agora space, impressive stairs for sitting with a glass railing, a curved wall in the foyer, and a "blue stream" running down the floor, which is also a tribute to the original designer of the building, Kari Virta.

Seven parts of the new facilities, including the Media Lounge, Agora, and the art classroom, can be booked by anyone in the university for various events once the needs of teaching have been taken into consideration. Bookings can be made through the Services officers and the Timmi system.

About 300 Finnish and foreign students are studying for a degree at the School of Architecture. Staff number about 30. The School of Architecture has been part of the Faculty of Technology from the beginning of 2018.

This multi-purpose space can be divided into several small spaces, if needed.

One of the drafting rooms is reserved for second-year students. Everyone has a personal work space.

The interiors of the art classroom are still unfinished. In this space it is possible to work on graphics and ceramics, for instance, and practice live model drawing.

The curved wall of the corridor offers viewing windows into the facilities.

Last updated: 10.4.2018