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New Dipoli opened – a shared meeting place for everyone

21
August

Dipoli has been modernised. It is now a lookout spot towards the university, a low threshold meeting place and the main building of the university. Public areas of the main building are open to everyone at Aalto University and also to the public. The new Dipoli offers workspaces, restaurants, an auditorium, exhibition rooms and art. The activities of the university are visible in the lobbies and exhibition rooms and through various events. The opening ceremony of the new academic year will be held at Dipoli on 8 September.

The functional concept and vision of Dipoli have been built together by Aalto students, staff and partners. This autumn, the public areas of the building will display artworks of university alumni.

The unique building is the first collaboration of architects Raili and Reima Pietilä. Dipoli was completed in 1966. At first, the student union of the University of Technology owned the building, acting for years as the cultural centre of students of technology. It was also known for various events. Aalto University bought the building in 2014.

Dipoli has undergone a significant technical and structural modernisation project. Geothermal heat covers nearly 50 per cent of all energy-use in the building. “The modernisation was based on the original designs of Raili and Reima Pietilä and the unique architecture of the building. All skylights and fireplaces were renovated, staircases that were sealed during the building’s history were opened up and original concrete surfaces were restored,” says vice president Antti Ahlava. ALA Architects was in charge of architectural design and Tuuli Sotamaa, an alumnus of Aalto University was responsible for the interior design.

(photos: Tuomas Uusheimo)

Dipoli is home to the upper management and employees of the university, around 140 people. New ways of working are tested in the building. Work is done in multi-space offices using digital tools. Dipoli also offers a whole new world of opportunities for cooperation between Aalto employees and students and partners of the university. Technology Academy Finland, a partner of Aalto, will move in to Dipoli in August. Through the modernisation, the range of events held at Dipoli will also change. The building mainly serves university events, but the facilities will also be rented out to other parties.

Dipoli is also home to various restaurants: the student and staff restaurant Reima, which offers a subsidised lunch for students, à la carte restaurant Metso, Bistro Tenhola, Café Reima and Café Carre. Restaurant Reima and Café Carre are already open, and the others will open their doors in stages in September.

For further information, please contact:
Antti Ahlava, vice president, antti.ahlava@aalto.fi

Main photo: Matti Hämäläinen