More Than the Degree

Aalto University Campus, Otaniemi

Welcome to Aalto University! The place to be at all times.

The main campus of Aalto University is located in Otaniemi, Espoo, a city neighboring Helsinki. The campus is known for its modern architecture and is home to the university's schools and departments, as well as research centers, libraries, and student services.

The Aalto University campus was originally established in 1949 when the Finnish government purchased land for the Helsinki University of Technology and the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland. The campus was designed by architect Alvar Aalto and the first buildings, including athlete accommodation for the 1952 Helsinki Olympics (which later became student housing), were constructed in 1952. Today, the campus is a place for research, innovation, learning, and the arts, and is being developed in partnership with the City of Espoo to create an environment that supports interaction and collaboration. The goal of the campus development is to preserve its valuable history while also embracing new forms of planning.

The Aalto University campus is situated on a green, park-like setting, with many trees and outdoor spaces for students to enjoy. The campus is home to a variety of buildings, including academic buildings, residential halls, sports facilities, and more. I will tell you more about the different schools and sustainability aspect 🙌🏽

  • The campus is home to the university's schools and departments. The campus also houses several research centers and institutes.
  • One of the most iconic buildings on the Aalto University campus is the Aalto Design Factory, a hub for innovation and collaboration that brings together students, researchers, and industry partners. The Design Factory is a place where students can work on real-world projects and learn from professionals in their field.
  • The campus has a strong focus on sustainability, with many buildings designed to be energy-efficient and environmentally friendly. There are also many green spaces and outdoor areas on the campus, including a park and a lake, where students can relax and enjoy the natural surroundings.

It is very easy to book a study space both individually or with a group using the Aalto Space App. As a Business student, I am most inside the Väre building which was constructed around 2019. The building is a pinnacle of Aalto's design and creative architecture.

As an Aalto Squad Member, I have also recorded TikToks of the Väre building as well as with my colleagues in some of the classrooms. These are fun activities to partake in as an Aalto student.

There are several dining options available on the Aalto University campus in Otaniemi, Espoo. These options include:

  • Aalto Design Factory: This is a cafe located within the Aalto Design Factory building on the Aalto University campus. The cafe offers a variety of drinks and snacks, including coffee, tea, sandwiches, and pastries.
  • Many different student restaurants offer a variety of lunch and dinner options. The menu features a mix of Finnish and international dishes, as well as vegetarian and vegan options. The price per meal is approximately 3 euros and you can see the menu of the day from
  • Other dining options: There are also several other dining options such as Fat Lizard, Fafas, Who the **** is Alice, available on the Aalto University campus, including a convenience store and vending machines that offer drinks and snacks.

I find the University Library, Harald Herlin Learning Centre, a really good and inviting place to study and concentrate. This is the history behind it:

The Otaniemi Library building, designed by Alvar and Elissa Aalto, was completed in 1969 and underwent a major renovation in 2016. After the renovation, all of the campus libraries were relocated to the building, which was renamed the Harald Herlin Learning Centre. The renovation of the building was done in partnership with the National Board of Antiquities and the Alvar Aalto Foundation to preserve the original design and features of the building, including the use of light. The building is now a showcase of Alvar Aalto's design style.

Many students including myself live in Teekkarikylä which was built in the middle of the forest in 1949. It is known as the student village with over 1000+ apartments and housing space accommodating over 2000 students. The campus is 10 mins walking distance from the student village, and there are buses that commute to the city center and towards Tapiola, Espoo. The rent is anywhere between 260 to 600 euros depending on the size and location of the apartments.

Cool things to add in 2023? Yes, Napping Pods.

At the start of the 2022 academic year, students at Aalto University were invited to propose ideas to improve the campus and make it more comfortable from a student perspective. This was part of the annual "one euro for every student" participatory budgeting project, which aims to involve students in decision-making about the campus and its facilities. A total of 13,000 euros was set aside for the project.

Students submitted a range of ideas, and five of these were chosen for voting. The chosen ideas were selected based on their potential to promote student well-being, inclusiveness, accessibility, sustainability, and feasibility in terms of budget and implementation schedule.

In November, students were able to vote for their favorite idea. Around 400 votes were cast, and the winning proposal was for the installation of snooze capsules on the campus. These capsules would provide students with a place to rest and take naps during the day, which can help improve brain function, memory, and overall well-being.

- Areeb, Master's Programme in Information and Service Management

Areal view of Otaniemi Campus
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