The New Think Corner adds a contemporary layer of architecture between the well-known university buildings and creates a campus like feel with a distinct and unique identity that is about being in the city.
University of Helsinki resides in the very heart of Helsinki´s Empire era center. The old administrative building was renovated as a New Think Corner, a meeting point for science and citizens. Inviting openness and interaction are at the core of the design. Linking the university buildings together, the renovation aims to complete the dynamics of the city center campus.
The Think Corner building is positioned on a prominent corner site opposite the main University building designed by Carl Ludvig Engel in 1832 on one side and on the other it faces Aarne Ervi’s celebrated Porthania building from 1957 that also forms part of the Helsinki University central city campus.
The building adds a contemporary layer of architecture between the well-known university buildings. It creates a campus like feel yet has a distinct and unique identity that is about being in the city.
The location of the campus area provides a prominent setting for the renovation. The materials of the façade – natural stone and plaster, are chosen to connect Tiedekulma into the surrounding site. Large windows on the street level open up the façade and provide a view to the everyday life at the university.
Inside a double story atrium opens the building creating a generous space that feels public. The second floor has further accommodation for the Think Corner including hot desking facilities and events space. The third, fourth and fifth floors are dedicated to offices. On the sixth floor at the very top there is a wrap-around balcony with views over central Helsinki.
The Think Corner’s timber clad stepped entrances are like outdoor rooms inviting the public in but also creating a generous urban realm that helps mediate between the existing two historic university buildings. The rest of the building is clad in plaster and Finnish granite from Viitasaari giving it the gravitas befitting of the neighbouring neo-classical architectural Engel designed ensemble at Senate Square.