Stora Enso's wooden head office taking shape

Published 8 June 2020
Sustainable cities of the future will be built with wood. In Helsinki, a new sea front landmark is about to take shape based on the Office Building Concept by Stora Enso. This new wooden building will be the Stora Enso head office, showcasing the design opportunities offered by wood products. Six architectural design entries for this sustainable future office have been announced.

Six competing building designs from the international, invitation-based architecture competition for the new office building at the sea front in Katajanokka are now public. The new building, which will house Stora Enso’s new head office, a hotel and public spaces for city residents to enjoy the maritime location, is developed by the Finnish Mutual Pension Insurance Company Varma.

Based on the , the new office will be a landmark of Stora Enso’s sustainable construction for the future: “Stora Enso has delivered wooden elements to more than 15,000 sites around the world during last years. We have seen great examples of what can be done with wooden buildings. However, this new office located at Katajanokanlaituri 4 is not only another building project for us, it is much more. This will be our new head office and the heart of the company,” says Antto Kauhanen, Business Development Manager for Building Solutions.

Inspired by nature

Forest, sea and nature are present in several competition entries. The facades of the entries draw on neoclassical lines as well as undulating shapes and wooden lattices that play with light and the seascape.

“Our goal is to develop high-quality office premises in the heart of Helsinki, that coincide with the landscape and the urban surroundings. The competition entries satisfy this goal well,” says Ilkka Tomperi, Investment Director, Real Estate Investments at Varma, the project developer and property owner.

The future is carbon neutral

“This is a central location in the heart of Helsinki and there is a lot of expectations,” says Anni Sinnemäki, Helsinki Deputy Mayor for Urban Environment. “With these architectural designs, I am delighted to see that wooden construction is a true solution for construction in a challenging urban environment.”

The aim is to make the building called Katajanokan Laituri (Katajanokka’s Pier) carbon neutral, so it would have a zero-carbon footprint throughout its entire lifecycle. Massive wooden elements used as construction material will cut construction time emissions significantly as well as reduce the use of non-renewable resources.

“The future will be built with wood,” Antto Kauhanen concludes.

The competition entries are now public and you can take a closer look at the designs and vote for your favourite entry. The winning design will be announced later this month.

Building concepts by Stora Enso

Office buildings Q&A

Office buildings

Find out more about designing and constructing wooden office buildings.

Read more