National Pensions Building
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Architect Alvar Aalto
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Location Helsinki, Finland
Date competition 1949, built 1952   timeline
Building Type government offices
 Construction System brick cladding
Climate cold
Context urban
Style Modern
Notes Beautiful example of detailing brick-as-cladding, with bronze metal trim.


Photo, exterior

Photo, exterior

Photo, exterior


Plan Drawing

Plan Drawing

Discussion National Pensions Building Commentary

"The National Pensions Institute, by Aalto (competition 1948; completed 1956), occupies a restricted triangular site in the northern part of the city. In it Aalto reintroduced red brick for modern Finnish town architecture. The brick buildings, copper-trimmed, step up the slope and enclose a raised courtyard. The canteen... exemplifies Aalto's decorative inventiveness; note the metal ceiling panels containing heating units and the walls lined with rounded ceramic tiles—invented by Aalto for this occasion and used by him in several buildings subsequently."

— J.M. Richards. 800 Years of Finnish Architecture. Vancouver: David and Charles, 1978. p156-7.

Sources on National Pensions Building

David Dunster, ed. Alvar Aalto. London: St. Martin's Press, 1978. p80-85.

Kevin Matthews. The Great Buildings Collection on CD-ROM. Artifice, 2001. ISBN 0-9667098-4-5.— Available at  Find books about National Pensions Building


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