The Workers’ Institute That Vanished Again

When the workers’ institute moved away from the premises, where I photographed in 2014, 2016 and 2017, it was given new spaces in a former school. Built originally in 1964 as a secondary school and high school, it was enlarged in 1968 and 1972. A curious detail about the building was that it was designed by the same architect, who designed the headquarters of newspaper Kaleva.

I found the building a rather interesting example of 1960’s school architecture, but the city thought otherwise. They needed new apartments, so they started planning a residential area featuring five tall blocks of flats.

The planning process was smooth and the workers’ institute once again had to find new premises. When I noticed that most of the school seemed empty, I knew that the end was near.

I did want to take some last photographs from the place, but when I went closer, I noticed demolition had already started. This picture is almost paradoxal: they are tearing the right side apart, yet there’s still clearly something going on in the building. It’s almost like the case with the old mail truck depot.

And the demolition really wasn’t a cosmetic “let’s just rip off a few wall panels” -style thing. The excavator is on the site, but the lights are on.

The large wing in the center of the picture is the gymnasium, I think. Behind it is the wing being demolished.

The mystery remains. Why did they have the lights on? Was someone still home?

Published by desertedfinland

A Finnish Urban explorer & Photographer

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