Inspired by Lego blocks
ESPOO (FI) - Located in a rather ordinary middle-class suburb, the Tuomarila day-care centre in Espoo is a modest-looking building on the outside. But as soon as one enters the fenced playground, there awaits a fine surprise: a Lego-inspired, zigzagging facade that is bursting with energy and presence. The budget for this children's building was relatively tight, so the architect duo Auer & Sandås had to allocate the money wisely.
The brilliant trick that makes this building stand out is the fresh and vibrant selection of colours on the front facade. The colours change across the width of the facade, from bright candy colours at the lower end, to more muted greens and yellows close to the upper entrance, where the youngest children and babies have their own spaces. The playful, two-storey building creates a fun and energetic backdrop for the sloping schoolyard. A spiral staircase lends added character to the essentially very simple facade.
The interior has its own colour scheme, which is softer and more restrained as the architects wanted to let the children, in their own colourful clothes, stand out here. It was a wise choice as the children's drawings and other artwork also stand out better against a more neutral background.
The coloured facade (the other three are a pure modernist white) is clad with Steni fibreglass reinforced polymer composite facade panels in colours varying from very red and bright pink to yellow, green and blue. The building is one of the 25 or so works chosen for the Museum of Finnish Architecture's exhibition of the best Finnish architecture from 2008 – 2009. It also won second prize in the Colour 09 competition. (Tarja Nurmi)
Colour, Facade, Interior |