COBE proposes to transform polluted helsinki bay into vast public park
 
COBE proposes to transform polluted helsinki bay into vast public park
nov 17, 2015

COBE proposes to transform polluted helsinki bay into vast public park

danish studio COBE and finnish firm lundén architecture have revealed proposed plans for the regeneration of helsinki’s töölönlahti bay. the scheme transforms the polluted basin, currently dividing the city center in two, into a vast public park that unifies the finnish capital. the project proposes pedestrian and bicycle routes aimed at reconnecting the surrounding neighborhoods with the bay area, and establishing an eventful promenade along the water.

COBE lunden architecture N2 toolonlahti bay helsinki public park designboom
the scheme transforms the polluted basin into a vast public park that unifies helsinki
image by luxigon / all images courtesy of COBE and lundén architecture

 

 

 

töölönlahti bay area is a forgotten pearl in the heart of helsinki,’ explains dan stubbergaard, founder and creative director of COBE. ‘its location between the neighborhoods of töölö and kallio, the olympic park, the central station and the city center, makes the bay and its surroundings a place of great importance in 21st century helsinki. surrounded by a series of cultural icons such as the opera house, helsinki music center, finlandia hall congress center, kiasma museum among others, the töölönlahti bay is situated in a completely unique urban setting.’

COBE lunden architecture N2 toolonlahti bay helsinki public park designboom
the regeneration would allow citizens to use the basin for leisure activities

 

 

 

many prestigious architects from alvar aalto to eliel saarinen have previously proposed visions for how this natural bay area in the heart of the city should be developed. these ideas have ranged from transforming the site into a cultural monument, to using the entire area for urban development. as yet, none have been fully realized. rapid development of helsinki in the late 1800s began a transformation of the city center. during this time the bay was occupied by factories that polluted the water, and — owing to a low level of water circulation — water eutrophication still continues to this day. it is predicted that without intervention, the basin will turn into a swamp before eventually drying out completely.

COBE lunden architecture N2 toolonlahti bay helsinki public park designboom
an eventful promenade would surround the natural bay

 

 

 

we want to give töölönlahti back to the people. through a comprehensive and ambitious water purification plan, the currently polluted bay will become helsinki’s main central urban space,’ continues stubbergaard. ‘a place where people from all over the city will swim in the water, sunbathe in the summer sun and drink evening coffee along the promenade. like the purification of copenhagen’s central harbor area at the end of the nineties, this could be a catalyst that begins a major revitalization of helsinki. new public functions, restaurants, cafés, conference facilities, a hotel and housing will create an economic basis for implementing this grand vision,’ continues dan stubbergaard.

 

eero lundén, director of lundén architecture, adds: the new vision is as much about enhancing the existing qualities and conditions, as introducing new programs and public spaces in order to create a new citizens park for all of helsinki.

COBE lunden architecture N2 toolonlahti bay helsinki public park designboom
the project proposes pedestrian and bicycle routes aimed at reconnecting the surrounding neighborhoods

COBE lunden architecture N2 toolonlahti bay helsinki public park designboom
new pedestrian walkways are proposed

COBE-lunden-architecture-N2-toolonlahti-bay-helsinki-public-park-designboom-X7
the development would connect the site with its illustrious surroundings

COBE lunden architecture N2 toolonlahti bay helsinki public park designboom
the site shown during finland’s harsh winter

COBE lunden architecture N2 toolonlahti bay helsinki public park designboom
site plan indicating areas of development

 

 

project info:

 

location: helsinki, finland
client: N2
architects: COBE and lundén architecture
engineers: rambøll finland
water purification: terramare boskalis
program: vision for park area in helsinki
size: 40,000 sqm
images: COBE and lundén architecture

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