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Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Korkeassari, Helsinki, Finland

Zoological redesign creates a land of mystical exploration

In collaboration with TN+ landscape designers, Beckmann-N'Thépé have conceived an intelligent rehabilitation of the zoological island of Korkeassari, from the circulation in the different biozones, to the construction of a contemporary entrance edifice. Here the architecture disappears in favour of controlled geography.

Including landscape, greenhouses, auditorium, nocturama, reception office, souvenir shop, technical room and restaurant the 26.2 ha site has been reinvented to make it wild and mysterious once more. Architecture disappears in favour of controlled geography, like the resurgence of a neighbouring landscape. The entrance grouping the set of utilities crucial to the running of the zoo becomes a focus of visual identity, somewhere between form and shapelessness, pierced with cavities. Like layers of skin peeled back to receive an implant, there will be an above and a below that dialogue with and penetrate one another. Areas of light, uncertainty, reflections and depths will be developed, offering the first emotions of a visit that will play on time and the seasons through four biozones: Central Asian Steppe; Arctic Pole; Asian Temperate Forest; and Central Asian Mountain.
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