2017 SEPTEMBER

Sasu Alasentie

The district plan by UKI Architects was awarded the first prize in a competition for the development of the Siikaluoto industrial area in the centre of Pietarsaari. Courtesy UKI Architects

The district plan by UKI Architects was awarded the first prize in a competition for the development of the Siikaluoto industrial area in the centre of Pietarsaari. Courtesy UKI Architects

Architect and urban planner Sasu Alasentie is FCINY’s artist-in-residency in September 2017. Since 2013, Alasentie has been working for Oulu-based UKI Architects, one of the largest architecture companies in Finland.

Practicality, functionality and ecological sustainability are defining characteristics in Alasentie’s design practice. Alasentie describes his approach as human-centered. For him this means not only carefully considering the human scale throughout the design process but also seeing his work as a means to encourage human interaction. Additionally in his work Alasentie highlights sensitivity for the specific environment he's planning for – its scale, spirit and overall nature, which is why a profound analysis of the site is an essential part of his design process. Alasentie’s goal is to create distinctive architectural interpretations by layering new designs on top of the existing built environment and its history.

Kangas is the most significant urban development project in the city of Jyväskylä. Courtesy UKI Architects

Throughout his career, Sasu Alasentie has been working on diverse architectural and urban planning projects. Recently he has been intrigued by the rededication of a land known as infill and urban planning projects in repurposed and densified city areas, such as old industrial districts and factory milieus. Recent examples of infill building projects Alasentie has been working on are the former paper mill area of Kangas in Jyväskylä, the former industrial site of Siikaluoto in Pietarsaari and the former hospital area of Törnävä in Seinäjoki. These projects, which are all results of his success in architectural competitions, aim to revitalize abandoned districts by creating new uses for existing built environments.

During his residency in New York, Alasentie intends to expand his expertise in infill building and urban planning. He will not only examine how such redevelopment of urban structures have been designed but also how these projects have been received among the residents of the highly densified New York City. Alasentie hopes to gain deeper understanding on how we can develop our changing cities whilst honoring the history of buildings and communities, thus creating humane and unique settings for people to live in.

Hospital area of Törnävä in Seinäjoki. Courtesy UKI Architects

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