Huopalahdenportti area

Background: parallel assignment, 1st prize
Type: reference plan
Client: Senaatti, Yliopistokiinteistöt
Status: planning completed
Timeline: 2013–2020
Location: Ruskeasuo, Helsinki, Finland
Scope of project: 101,000 m² housing; 7,100 m² office and commercial spaces
Team: Sami Heikkinen (partner in charge), Emilia Ellilä (project architect), Anna-Kaisa Aalto, Leena Buller, Vesa Humalisto, Antti Lehto, Antti Haataja, Ville Mellin

Streetscapes tailored for pedestrians in one of the most prominent urban infill sites in Helsinki.


The site lies at the outer limit of Mannerheimintie, Helsinki’s main thoroughfare. The district is known for its colourful architecture, although its major qualities lie in its carefully designed and pedestrian-friendly urban spaces.

Human dimension

Curtailed vistas and variable scales create a pleasant pedestrian environment.

Tailored to the site

Parking facilities are located to optimize townscaping, terrain and economical factors. Despite the high density construction, many existing large trees and rocky outcrops have been preserved.

New gateway to Helsinki

The residential buildings create a gateway into the city. The facades protect the apartments against noise and air pollutants from the busy traffic route.

Massive roughcast walls are accentuated in the new architecture, reflecting a construction typology typical to older buildings along the main road.

The project will be the first infill development to be built along a main thoroughfare leading into Helsinki.