Vellamonkatu Aparments for Elderly and Daycare Centre
The site selected for the Ilmajoki home for the elderly and day centre was a meadow surrounded by existing buildings near the former home for the elderly, which had served for a century.
The long building has an east-side orientation. The high north wall runs along an open field between old grain warehouses, the former home for elderly and the birch avenue leading to it. This open area gives the new building breathing space and highlights the public day centre section. The housing units of the home for the elderly, located on the south side, are low, matching the surrounding low-rise housing in scale and density. The eastern end houses the main entrance to the building, while the maintenance facilities are grouped at the western end.
The functions are placed mainly on one level. The rooms are grouped in three independent units, linked by a corridor along which there are common rooms and waiting rooms. The central corridor is on the sunny side and functions as the main artery of the building. Each housing unit has 14 to 17 rooms, characterized by sloping ceilings and varying heights, the rooms on the side getting the morning sun are higher than those on the evening sun side. The rooms are single rooms with bathroom en suite.
An essential consideration in the design was to make the housing units serviceable from the central corridor without disturbing the inhabitants. Each housing unit is independent, having its own maintenance and storage facilities, sauna, etc. The units have their own entrances for visitors. The common room, with kitchen and fireplace, forms the focus of each unit and provides easy access to the yard.
The building frame is made of wood. The interiors are light, and the character, proportions and lighting of the rooms vary according to their function, making identification easy.
Source: Finnish Architectural Review 2/1995