Aureskoski Jalostetehdas delivered the wooden slats for the canopy of the Helsinki Olympic Stadium as a part of the renovation that was completed in autumn 2020. The renovation of the culturally and historically valuable building has used wood as a spectacular part of the site’s architecture, and the renovated stadium has won several construction awards.The ceiling is one of the most significant masterpieces of Finnish wood construction.
Finding the right shade and organizing on-time deliveries
Aureskoski delivered almost 15,000 m2 of wood-stone slats for the canopy of the Helsinki Olympic Stadium. The proportions of the renovation were unique in Finland.
"Tikkurila is one of our material suppliers. In the Olympic Stadium ceiling project, Tikkurila tested and verified the functionality of their products in our wood-stone slats", says Juha Koksalo, Production Manager of the Aureskoski Jalostetehdas.
Aureskoski's wood-stone slats were treated with Tikkurila's colourless wood priming oil, tested in Tikkurila's Vantaa laboratory. Tikkurila was able to produce just the right colour shade according to the architect's specifications and based on a model piece taken from the old ceiling of the Olympic Stadium. Tikkurila also adjusted its production capacity for the timber facing of this massive project.
"Based on tests performed by Tikkurila, a suitable surface treatment solution was selected for the product, and the customer received the desired shade on the surface of the product. The slats were painted with this translucent shade at our factory", Koksalo says.
The challenge for a fast-growing company was access to raw materials. Even in the ceiling project of the Olympic Stadium, the quick start schedule posed challenges for the creation of the raw material flow.
Koksalo is pleased with Tikkurila's well-organized material deliveries and support and guidance they received during the project
Technical know-how and 10,000 litres of surface treatment agent
The old canopy surface of the Olympic Stadium had once been treated with Tikkurila products. Based on the experience, it was easy for Tikkurila to find a shade that met the architect's requirements for compatibility with new structures.
"We created a completely new shade for this project, which was not previously in our colour charts, and when combined with weather resistance and adhesion properties, all the parts fell into place", says Mika Peltola from Tikkurila.
The wood-stone itself does not have its own shade, and colour absorption was one aspect that had to be considered. First, a clear waterborne wood preservative was used and on top of it, two coloured layers. The combination ensures that the coating adheres, is weather-resistant and that the colour is durable.
"Although our work is based on solid experience, we had to be especially careful with this product, because it was such a big site", Mika Peltola continues.
When the production of slats started at the factory on a fast schedule, Tikkurila had to ensure the security of its own production and raw material supply.
"Our production capacity was adjusted for six months according to the needs of the project. A total of 10,000 litres of surface treatment products were used for the stadium's wood-stone slats, and the same shade is now available also for other sites", says Mika Peltola.
The project thoroughly explored the material options, as it was particularly important to meet fire protection and safety requirements in the bleachers with more than 36,000 seats. The Aureskoski wood-stone met the fire requirements so well that the structure did not have to be equipped with an automatic extinguishing system. The wood-stone was also strong enough to withstand well the screw fastening.
Even fire-painted ordinary wood would have reached the same fire class, but the advantage of wood-stone is that it does not need recoating.
Untreated wood-stone slats, on the other hand, would have turned log-grey. However, the architect wanted a semi-transparet colour treatment for the slats to match the overall look of the stadium.
"Our laboratory tests ensured that the combination we were thinking of for the site also works at the Stadium in terms of weather conditions", says Mika Peltola, Tikkurila's Key Customer Manager.
The seamless cooperation between Tikkurila and Aureskoski guaranteed success in this significant project. The long experience of Aureskoski Jalostetehdas in manufacturing high-quality wood products and Tikkurila's expertise in industrial wood surface treatment facilitated a solution that will last far into the future.
The renovation of the Olympic Stadium was also a significant project in Finnish construction history. The stadium, already called the most beautiful in the world, is an even more magnificent national monument after the renovation.