West Terminal 2, Port of Helsinki

Location: Helsinki, Finland
Size: 12,800 m²
Functions: Ferry terminal, Café
Scope: Architecture, Interior, Furniture design
Status: Completed 2017, 2021 (new furniture)
Client: Port of Helsinki

West Terminal 2 was designed to enable faster embarkation and disembarkation of ferry passengers in this busy port serving traffic between Helsinki and Tallinn, Estonia. Walking distances are minimised, enabling the rapid transfer of large numbers of passengers to and from the ships.

Despite the focus on efficiency, the design also aimed at a high standard of quality and comfort. The public spaces are bright, comfortable and feel safe. The surface materials were chosen for wear resistance so as to retain their attractiveness throughout the building's lifespan.

Different types of wood are used in the interior: thermally modified pine in the ceiling, whitened birch on the walls and solid maple for furniture. The café and bar counters are made from the same sea aluminium as used in the facades.

The waiting hall is a spacious, lounge-like space with wooden beamed ceilings, a wide glazed wall providing uninterrupted sea views, and a seaside terrace. A set of three multifunctional seating islands were designed for the hall in 2021, made up of overlapping round wood elements and partly clad in black or grey leather, reminiscent of the skerries dotting the Finnish archipelago. The central seating island can be disassembled for use as a small stage or stand for pop-up exhibitions.