The University of Vaasa campus will be renewed responsibly – construction work will start in late autumn
– Our will is to develop a campus in such a way that it provides an even better working and study environment for all. To ensure this, we will take into account the views of our staff and students in the various phases of ongoing campus planning in the autumn. We will also set up a demo area where the university community can familiarize themselves with the planned solutions, says Jari Kuusisto, the Rector of the University of Vaasa.
The development project is implemented using an alliance model based on mutual agreement and close cooperation between the actors. The development project plan has now been completed and construction work is expected to begin in late autumn.
The commissioner of the Vaasa Merikampus alliance is Vaasan Merikampus Oy, the property management company of the University of Vaasa. Other alliance parties include architectural firm K2S Oy, structural planning firm Ramboll Finland Oy, building services engineering firm Granlund Pohjanmaa Oy and construction firm Peab Oy, which will carry out the construction work. Planning began in November 2020, after which the alliance partners have worked closely on the development project plan.
– For us, a world-class campus means, above all, a campus that is larger in size and functionality, and which is an attractive place to study and work. It is reasonable to assume that change and development will continue to be difficult to predict in the future. The campus, therefore, needs to be adaptable to ever-changing needs. In addition to providing quiet and peaceful workspaces, for us, the campus is, above all, a place of encounter and community, and as such, its importance is growing in these times. This is a unique opportunity for us, says Harri Salmela, Director of Finance of the University.
Agile solutions for future needs
The cornerstones of campus design are responsibility, flexibility of transformation, support for the community, and efficient use of premises. The university wants to create multi-purpose facilities that are suitable for the changing needs of the future. Especially with the increase in distance learning, the needs related to facilities are very different from before. The facilities can be modified, for example with function-based furniture, so that a lecture room can serve as a study space in the evening.
With the changes, campus functions will move to new buildings. In addition, there is a desire to create meeting places on campus where comfortable spaces can be used to recover from brainwork. Being close to the sea is a matter of pride for the university, and there is a desire to fully exploit the potential of the beautiful campus.
There is strength in the community
One of the goals of campus development is to involve the users of the facilities in the planning. During the last year, the development work has seen participation from several working groups that have been open to any staff or students. The groups gathered extensive information on the needs, wishes, and opportunities of different facilities and user groups. In addition to working group activities, various events were organized for students in the spring, through which they were able to influence campus development with a low threshold.
Information and feedback from staff and students are utilized extensively in campus plans. By working together, the campus becomes an attractive world-class meeting place that inspires all of its users.