postitalo – an iconic office building
The most important aspect of JRA-Sähkö’s project was to reconcile the old building components with the new technology without compromising the overall design.
JRA-SÄHKÖ IN THE RENOVATION PROJECT OF POSTITALO
Postitalo’s facilities and building technology were modernised during an extensive renovation. JRA-Sähkö was responsible for part of the electrical and telecommunication installations in 2017–2019.
Postitalo – former main post and telegraph office, located in the heart of Helsinki, is one of the capital’s most famous landmarks. The property, which is valuable in terms of architectural history, is under the supervision of the Finnish Museum Agency, which also affects the renovation and modernisation of the premises. The building is owned by the insurance company Ilmarinen, which requires always high quality from the construction works it orders.
Postitalo was completed in 1938 and it became a significant architectural icon in the young republic. The furniture, lighting and interior design of the house were designed by the most famous designers of the era. The national post service’s operations and requirements have changed over the decades, and the premises have been adapted for restaurant and meeting use, for example.
JRA-Sähkö’s personnel worked at Postitalo for two years. The project was divided into smaller contracts and JRA-Sähkö was responsible for the electrical and telecommunication installations of several contracts. Each new part was preceded by a thorough planning phase. After the previous overhaul in the early 2000s, technology had developed greatly. However, the most important thing was still the coordination of old constructions and new technology in such a way that the special character of the house does not change. In repair work, exact instructions were followed, and no solutions that would affect the style were used.
JRA-Sähkö’s tasks included, among other things, lighting installations, installation of cable trays and ducts, and electrical and telecommunication systems with the necessary centers installed in full operational condition. In addition, the work included commissioning measurements of electricity and the telecommunications system. Completely new was the background noise system for the corridors and the KNX lighting control system for lighting. The installation work was challenging, because the building was partly in use all the time and cabling was done from one area to another.
The installation work was challenging, because the building was partly in use all the time and cabling was done from one area to another.
As with other downtown renovation projects, very little storage space was available, so the deliveries of goods had to be precisely scheduled according to the work phases. For example, more than 600 meters of cable shelves and more than 1,000 sockets were installed. The project’s schedule was tight and the management was required to have quick decision-making ability in unpredictable situations typical of renovation projects. The success of the demanding project was facilitated by the smooth cooperation between several operators who worked on the property at the same time.
Photo: The Finnish Heritage Agency