Ristiniemi Funerary Chapel
The first architectural competition for the church was organised in 1933. Unhappy with the results, the competition committee announced a new competition in 1936. In this second competition, most of the entries employed a tower in the dominant street axis. The project was assigned to professor J. S. Sirén, second runner-up in the competition, but the implementation was terminated by the Winter War. In 1961, a third competition was organised and it was won by architects Timo and Tuomo Suomalainen.
In the Suomalainen brothers’ winning proposal, the rock was kept as intact as possible by embedding the church inside the rock and placing the parish facilities on the edges of the hillock. The church hall is covered with a seemingly floating dome, lined with copper and supported on the rugged rock walls by reinforced concrete beams. The row of windows surrounding the periphery of the dome shed light to the altar wall, where an ice-age crevice serves as the altarpiece.
Temppeliaukio Church is one of Helsinki’s most visited tourist attractions. In 2004, the the church was listed as a protected building. It is also listed on the DOCOMOMO Finland registered selection of important architectural and environmental modernist sites.