Community Centre Kastelli

Kastelli Community Centre is a place for learning, education, sports and culture.

The many users of the Centre include a comprehensive school, upper secondary school for youth
and adults and a library. There are also facilities for adult education and a youth centre. Large
scale of different sizes of sports halls serve athletic clubs after the school day. The largest gym
with telescopic auditorium is used also for floor ball, basketball and volleyball games in the national
league level.

Due to the complexity of the project the City of Oulu arranged a 2-phased design competition in
2009 - 2010: the entry called “hyrrä” (“gyroscope”) was declared the winner of the anonymous
competition. The winning entry succeeded in segmenting the impressive public building mass into
small-scale parts that together make up a sympathetic village and increase the sense of
community. The small-scale of children and their playfulness was taken into account on all design
stages and on colour design.
The functions of the centre are divided in smaller units according to age groups, which serve for
better orientation. The walking routes and the schoolyards are also designed according to the age

The evaluation of various learning environments was one of the key points in the design as there
are several schools in the centre. The users took part in the first stage space design and it was
continued together with the specialists in pedagogy. The design resulted in a flexible, convertible,
stimulating and safe learning environment that will also adjust for future new teaching and learning

The central lobby of the centre is collective and gives the building its own visual character with its
sculptural design, with its materials and colours. The canteen and the library are located in this
spatially rich lobby environment. The lobby is also used as foyer in public events. The curvilinear
lounge spaces in the lobby connect the comprehensive school and the upper secondary schools in
the first floor. The concrete structures and the dendriform (tree-like) concrete columns are cast-insitu.
Special attention was paid also to schoolyard design. Outdoor furniture, planting groups, green
mounds and comprehensive colour design and asphalt paintings enliven the stimulating yards. The
large yard around the building is divided by landscaping into smaller niches suitable for various age
groups; this design is aligned with the architecture of the building. The noise barrier of the near-by
busy street and its relation with immediate surroundings has been also designed by means of
landscape architecture.

Location: Oulu
Year of completion: 2014
Client: City of Oulu
Gross area: 24650 m²
Principal Designer: Ilmari Lahdelma

Lifecycle Project / LEED for Schools Gold
• RIL Prize 2014 (The Finnish Association of Civil Engineers)
• MIPIM Award, shortlisted for the “Best Innovative Green Building”

Credits / Kastelli School and Multipurpose hall