Countries across the globe are looking for ways to rebuild after COVID-19 paused tourism and daily life. And Finland is hoping to tackle that goal, in part, by building a new museum. Included in their pandemic support package, the Finnish government is contributing funds to erect the Architecture and Design Museum in the capital city of Helsinki.
The government revealed a 1.3 billion euro supplementary budget to help the country recover. Of that, the new museum will get 60 million euros. The project will combine the Museum of Finnish Architecture and Design Museum Helsinki and will reside in the South Harbor area of the city.
"It is a significant decision when the state is so strongly committed to the realization of the new Architecture and Design Museum," Jukka Savolainen, director of the Design Museum Helsinki and Reetta Heiskanen, director of the Museum of Finnish Architecture said in a joint statement. "In the museums, we are now focusing our efforts on playing our part in rebuilding Finland in the midst of the crisis that affects everyone. We will do our utmost to make the museum a place for everyone."
The new museum is currently planned to open in 2025 at the same site where the Helsinki Guggenheim was proposed (and later abandoned). "In the view of the museums, the next step is joint discussions with the Ministry of Education and Culture and the city of Helsinki, and to advance the project further towards the establishment of a project organization, as well as further development of the operating model," said Savolainen and Heiskanen.
While the build is part of the immediate relief effort, it marks one of the many new projects Helsinki has completed in recent years. The goal, even before the COVID-19 crisis, was to make the city a cultural hub.
"The momentum is now, Finland has recently had a museum boom and also Helsinki's new central library Oodi has been well received," Heiskanen and Savolainen told Dezeen. "Now it's time to establish a new museum of architecture and design. Finland has all that it takes to bring attention to Nordic well-being and design."