The School for the Special Salmon Part I

Because of my work I got involved with a building project. It was about demolishing an old school and some adjacent tree houses and replacing them with modern high rise blocks of flats with a nice view over a river.

The school was from the 1960’s, a very unspectacular building with a red brick facade. It was called Lohipadon koulu (School of the Salmon Dam) and it had been a school for children with special needs. A waterpipe had burst in the basement, and the school was no longer fit for use.

I didn’t even photograph the school’s exterior. Thanks to Wikimedia Commons, we know what the place looked like.

A new school building had already been built across town, and the kids had moved out. Planning for the new houses wasn’t quite ready yet, so the construction company owning the school had rented out parts of it to different companies and organizations. They had all been evicted except for a boxing club which still used the gymnasium as their training premises.

The construction company gave me a tour on the premises related to my job. When it was over, I told that I photographed abandoned buildings as a hobby, and asked if I could come again later.

”Oh, sure. Just keep the keys, we don’t really need them. Come anytime you like and spend as much time as you like.”

I was so amazed, that I didn’t even manage to catch an exterior shot of the building.

I entered the school through the first door I saw and this was what I found. I thought this looked promising.

The first few rooms were extremely messy, broken up and contained all kinds of stuff. I thought it was a good sign, but it pretty soon turned out, this school was very much different.

I next stumbled in a small room left untouched since the school moved away. This had probably belonged to a teacher. Either someone teaching a very specific subject or someone doing student councelling.

Right next to the entrance I used was a strange room. It looked either like a storage or the schools woodworking class, but there was no trace of any machinery left. Even the door frames had been taken away, which resulted in probably the most dangerous emergency exit I had ever seen in an abandoned building.

If the previous school was full of surprises, this one really didn’t disappoint either. Could someone please explain, what a Nokia sign is doing in a former school?

This room definitely had something to do with woodworking. Such a modern tv here.

Oh dear. Their coffee must have gotten quite cold by this time.

So school was out, and they left in a hurry. The machinery has been taken away, the rest has been left behind.

I may not be a specialist in designing buildings, but I think this one was particularly badly designed. It was really a maze and full of dark corridors like this. The walls are pastel coloured as is the floor, but I don’t think they’re original.

Like always someone had gotten the urge to write on the blackboards.

Here you can perhaps catch a glimpse on what the exterior was like. A part of the school had just one floor, some wings had two storeys.

All in all I think this was a rather boring school. It offered very little to photograph but did contain some big surprises, the first of which was the Nokia sign. And I’ll get to the second one right at the start of the next post.

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