Striving for a positive learning environment
The new, wooden-structured, integrated Vehmaa School
was completed at the beginning of the autumn semester
of 2019. About 200 students from grades 1 to 9 have
been able to begin their studies at the school’s new
premises. The facilities are designed to accommodate
a total of 250 pupils. Here, modern learning and working
environments have been created, which is reflected in
the facilities equipment and teaching methods.
The new school building includes a multi-purpose hall
for dining that also functions as a lounge or media
room, and for small groups to study and research. The
school is complemented by an adjacent sports hall
built in 2013.
An important investment for the future
At a cost of almost 7.5 million euros, the school is a
major investment in a rural community with a population
of just under 2,500. The school was seen as particularly
important for the vibrancy and future of the Vehmaa
community. The new facility, designed by the Turkubased
company Arkkitehtitoimi Leino Oy, was built
mainly of wood and aroused great interest in other
When serious indoor air problems were identified in
the old school building, the initial intention was to
refurbish and extend the building. However, it was
concluded that this project was not viable, so it was
decided to demolish the old building and construct
a new one. Several considerations were taken into
account when planning the new school building, for
instance the use of ecological construction methods
and materials, as well as a breathable structure to
avoid future problems with the indoor climate. The
building, which is mostly made of wood, was constructed
according to these criteria.
Durable rubber floor coverings
The school is housed on two floors. The previously
mentioned multi-purpose room serves as a dining area,
a place for group work, a lounge and a media room.
A two-story window wall brings sufficient light into the
room. The flooring of the multi-purpose room as well
as that of the corridor and lobby areas on the second
floor is fitted with the lightly coloured norament 926
grano, which makes the room even brighter. The rubber
material of the nora floor not only contributes to a
healthy indoor climate, but boasts excellent acoustic
properties that keep the sound level down.
The staircase leading to the second floor is covered
with norament 926 grano stairtreads with signal stripes.
This enhances the visual perception of the staircase
contours and the position of the step edge, thus facilitating
orientation on the stairs. The slip-resistant surface
also provides good traction, making the stairs pleasant
and safe to walk on. nora rubber floors are an excellent
choice for rooms where floors need to be durable,
functional, and easy to maintain.
Natural background colours
For classrooms, noraplan stone was selected in four
different shades of grey and brown, providing a neutral
background for light or colourful furniture. The colour
palette of noraplan stone includes 20 different shades.
Its reflection-breaking surface structure and the
discreet grain make the material come alive. Like
other nora rubber floor coverings, noraplan stone is
permanently resilient, making it pleasant to walk on.
A person’s back and legs are thus subjected to much
less strain than when walking on hard surfaces.
In addition to several international environmental
certificates, the nora floor coverings also carry the
national Finnish M1 certificate. The M1 certification
indicates that the material is low in pollutants and
suitable for use in a healthy learning and working
Finally, the floorings, like all flooring products sold
by Interface – including carpets, LVT, rubber sheets
and tiles – are certified carbon neutral through the
Carbon Neutral Floors™ programme, at no extra cost
to customers. nora’s own rubber plant in Weinheim,
southern Germany, is continually working to eliminate
or reduce CO₂ emissions and thus further reduce its
own carbon footprint. Unavoidable CO₂ emissions are
compensated by the acquisition of emission-reduction
certificates that are used to finance climate protection