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Mountain Man Competition



The competition is being arranged by Aalto University Properties Ltd in collaboration with Senate Properties. The goal is to create a comprehensive solution that is vibrant, unique, and of high quality in terms of its cityscape, for one of Otaniemi’s central blocks, resulting in a nurturing environment for top research, living, and interaction among various groups. The objective is to create a new, more densely built urban environment.

A new centre of excellence in bioeconomy, Bionova, is to be designed for VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland. It will exist partly in connection with the existing buildings.

A new student centre will be designed for student unions, realised by Aalto University’s Student Union (AYY), the Association of Economics Students in Helsinki (KY), and the student organisation Teknologföreningen (TF). These student organisations are looking to create an interdisciplinary meeting place and a centre for student activities, with the student centre at its core, complemented by nearby student housing.

In addition, the competition block will provide housing for people who work and live in Otaniemi.

Another goal is to find one or more designers for the new buildings through the competition. The intention is to commission the winner of the competition to design the city plan for the block and the plan for one of the buildings.

The competition will be arranged as an international invitation-based competition pursuant to the rules of the Finnish Association of Architects.

Mountain Man competition programme

Competition documents can be downloaded from the individual materialbank. Please ask Milla Uusitalo,, for the link to the materialbank.

The competitors are entitled to present questions pertaining to the programme or appendices and to request additional information in two stages: until 12 August 2016 (stage 1) and 12 September 2016 (stage 2) by sending e-mail to

The questions and answers will be presented for all the participants via the Web site anonymously and with identical content by 26 August and 26 September. Please find Q&A page here.

competition area

Check these useful links also:

Map service of Espoo
Bing Maps, Otaniemi


Find here all the Mountain Man entries!


Competition results

The Competition Jury unanimously decided to select “Nexus” (copyright Selina Anttinen and Vesa Oiva, Anttinen Oiva Architects Ltd) as the winning entry. The proposal is subtle, effective, and even with its high site efficiencies, conveys the spirit of Otaniemi.
It is a distinctive entity that imparts variety to its surroundings and supports the university’s diversification objectives. The requested 3D illustrative outdoor view demonstrates that the Students’ Community Centre’s low podium section presented in this entry provides an attractive response to the Learning Centre’s proportions. No significant differences on cost levels were discerned in the entries selected to continue.

Competition jury report