Jyväskylä, Finland 2015-

Client: GSP Group Ltd. / City of Jyväskylä

Total gross area: Estimated 200,000 m2, of which 77,000 m2 parking (mostly underground)
Basic Project Functions:
Ice-hockey / multi-purpose arena
Mid-size multi-purpose arena
Practice rinks
Offices, sports science cluster
Retail and commercial spaces
Sports clinic
Gym and indoor climbing
Sports park
Parking facilities

The Hippos2020 development project of the City of Jyväskylä will upgrade the Hippos sports area in Jyväskylä, Finland, into the most versatile indoor sports and wellness cluster in the Nordic countries. The Hippos area is located next to the renowned Jyväskylä University campus area designed by Alvar Aalto. The area takes its name from the horse racing track that operated in the area in 1913–1974.

According to the plans approved in spring 2017, the existing sports buildings in the area will be entirely replaced by new construction, nearly tripling the capacity of the current facilities. The new facilities will be purpose-built to meet the needs of different sports and user groups, while the interconnected premises allow for the flexible and efficient use of shared space. Parking will be arranged underground.

The Hippos area is set to become a nationally and even internationally important hub for both professional and amateur sports and fitness, sports research and technology, as well as a variety of health and wellness services.

The current Synergy Arena will be replaced with a new multipurpose indoor sports centre, which will comprise venues for a large variety of sports, e.g. ball games, athletics, wrestling and martial arts, as well as a mid-arena for matches and other events, accommodating up to 2,200 people.

A football hall will replace the current Hippos Hall, housing a full-size football field with spectator stands for 800. The building will be connected to a gymnastics centre that also provides venues for other indoor sports and ball games, such as squash.

A new stadium for Finnish baseball will be built at the corner of the area. In the surrounding sports park, visitors and local residents can enjoy a range of public sports and recreational facilities.

The actual sports facilities will be complemented by a hotel, residential buildings and commercial, research and office space.

The city plan for the area was approved in spring 2017, and an open competition attracted a wide range of investors and developers interested in the project. The main investor will be selected in autumn 2017 after further negotiations with selected partners. Construction is planned to begin in spring 2018, with the entire area to be completed in the mid-2020s. The expected total investment is approximately EUR 300 million.

PES-Architects have been involved in the development process since 2015 and made the schematic design and master plan that served as the basis for the city plan. Further development of the design has continued in 2017. The functional and architectural goal is to create a high-quality and sustainable public environment that will offer a positive user experience to the wide range of different user groups. Wood will be used as a building material and as cladding to the widest extent possible. Wood construction can be implemented quickly and cost-efficiently, and it supports the environmental and energy efficiency targets of the project. Wood also creates an ambience and image that supports the aim of the sports park to become a hub for Finnish sports expertise.


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