Periscope Tower

CompanyOOPEAA OFFICE FOR PERIPHERAL ARCHITECTURE
Lead DesignerAnssi Lassila
Design Teamproject architect: Kazunori Yamaguchi design team: Juha Pakkala, Anne Kaivo-oja
PrizeSilver in Architectural Design / Heritage Architecture

Periscope Tower The Periscope Tower is a giant wooden periscope structure that serves as an observation tower engaging the viewer in a dialogue with the landscape. With the help of a large mirror, the structure makes it possible for everyone to enjoy the views of the surrounding landscape. One can either climb up the stairs to enjoy the view over the lake, or simply stay on the ground and get the same view through the large periscope. Made entirely of wood, the building has a core of cross-laminated timber providing the frame for an extra large periscope with stairs circling around it. The external wooden frame serves as a loadbearing structure with various openings offering a rich series of views. The Periscope Tower is situated on the shore of a man-made lake that has been created to serve three main functions: to help keep the flooding in the plains of Ostrobothnia under control, to generate energy for the electric power plant, and to form an attractive site for a new residential area to be constructed on the shores of the lake. The Periscope Tower is part of a larger landscape design project for reshaping the lakeshore, developed by OOPEAA for the Seinäjoki Housing Fair 2016. With the Periscope Tower, the aim is to help activate the dam around the man-made lake and to turn it into a recreational area connected to a broader network of recreational paths designed to be accessible to everyone. The Periscope Tower is composed of four prefabricated elements assembled on site. The facades and the stairs are made of larch. The details and the security netting are of steel. The idea was to create a simple wooden structure of high quality in a way that supports learning and reflects a commitment to empowering and strengthening the local community.