In September 2022, the residents of Karstula and neighbouring municipalities in Central Finland received a new healthcare and rehabilitation centre, ‘Soteku’. The centre was built by Honkarakenne with Finnish, healthy logs. Work in the fresh, extremely functional facilities has begun, and the natural log surfaces of the buildings delight users every day.
Healthy log structures from the local plant
When the discussion was started on the construction of new healthcare facilities in Karstula, the situation was pretty similar to any other Finnish municipality. “Our health centre was old, needed renovation, and was too big for us. There were also problems with the indoor air. We wanted to have a healthy, safe and suitably sized building for healthcare and rehabilitation services,” says Mari Voimäki, technical director of the municipality of Karstula.
The people of Karstula were pleased to hear that the log elements for the centre were very local indeed, from the Honkarakenne plant nearby. “The good properties of logs speak for themselves. It was decided already earlier that the municipal buildings in the centre of Karstula should be clad with logs at least on the outside whenever possible,” says Voimäki.
Logs, an energy-efficient choice
The air is healthy and fresh to breathe in Soteku, and energy saving has been taken into account in the construction solutions. Environmental friendliness is effected not only with the airtight logs but also the solar panels on the roof and particularly energy-efficient windows.
The modern premises have been designed to be versatile, with the space used effectively. “The premises are modern, compact and versatile, so the heating costs, for example, are moderate,” says Marjo Kotilainen, Director of Health Services of health services provider Saarikka for Karstula and its neighbouring municipalities The architectural design was by Sweco Architects Ltd.
Positive feedback from residents and healthcare and social welfare professionals
The gentle log surfaces have received good feedback from visitors. “The logs liven up the light and bright building softly. We have received plenty of good feedback for the building’s appearance, especially its natural beauty. It’s a definite eye-catcher. Oh, this kind of a log building. How interesting and beautiful!” describes Kotilainen.
Voimäki has also heard similar comments. “Feedback on the building and its log surfaces has been positive. The rooms are light, and we have received positive comments on the log surface being visible not only on the outside but also on the inside,” says Voimäki.
New premises, an important investment
The construction project for the buildings went well, the new Soteku buildings are more functional than the old health centre, and healthier daily life has got off to a good start. “All in all – everything went well and everything’s functioning fine. We’re really happy,” sums up Voimäki.
Safe log premises are good to visit and work in. “In marketing and recruiting messages, we can say with satisfaction that the municipality has invested in beautiful premises and a new building,” says Kotilainen with a smile.
- Building type: Karstula SOTEKU center (Soteku municipal association Saarikka)
- Client: The municipality of Karstula
- Architectural design: Sweco Architects Oy
Main contractor: Rakennusliike Lapti Oy
- Location: Karstula
- Year of construction: 2022
- Floor area: approx. 2,000 m²
- Heating: District heating and solar power
- Energy class: A
- Log type: non-settling Honka Fusion log wall, FXL 270N
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