An important meeting place for the Teekkari community, the Teekkarisauna Mörrimöykky, has finally been completed. The legendary sauna was renovated to be more spacious and energy-efficient, and the interior and technology have been brought into the 2020s.
On Friday, November 10th, the parties responsible for the project met for a reception meeting, at which the renovation was announced to be completed, although the final touches were still missing.
Juha Koski and Masi Kajander of the Teekkari Foundation say that the need for Mörrimöykky renovation was noticed at the time of the merger of universities when TTYY donated the building to the Teekkari Foundation. Now, according to Koski, the facilities are even better than they were originally.
The heart of Mörrimöykky, built in 1992, i.e. the sauna space itself, had reached the end of its service life, and it was almost completely remade. The sauna, which was in heavy use, was already practically rotten, and its air conditioning needed updating. In fact, there are up to 200 sauna nights a year in the sauna, so the need for air conditioning is quite considerable.
The project has been long and challenging, at least not least because of the Covid-19 pandemic and the war of aggression by Russia. Costs skyrocketed, and there were natural challenges in dealing with a number of entities, including donors and workers. A large fundraiser was made for the renovation of the sauna, and the project received donations of money, workforce, and materials. In addition, it took time to map out the renovation needs and the community’s wishes. The big groundwork was done by a project team consisting of teekkari students, which was supplemented a couple of times as the project stretched and swelled.
The value of the project and its donations is nearly 700.000 euros, and the largest donors in the project were the biggest treasurers of teekkari culture Tampere Technical Society, as well as Ramboll, TEK and Sandvik. In total, about 50 companies and 195 teekkari’s donated to the project, and eight Teekkari Guilds in addition to TTS provided funding.
A thorough update
As soon as you enter the shiny Teekkarisauna, you will notice a big change. The walls of the main room are of light acoustic board, the fireplace and its partition have been demolished and the kitchen and bar counter have been moved to the place of the old back room. There is considerably more space, and the surfaces and equipment are very modern. In addition, performance technology, energy efficiency and lighting, for example, have been improved, and an accessible toilet has been built on the side of the dressing room.
The surfaces of the sauna and toilet facilities are also new, and the hallway partition is now narrower to make the passage smoother. Due to the kitchen move, the rear “meeting space” became smaller, but in the absence of all the stored debris it is still considerably more spacious and tidier than before. The building has two ventilation units, one in the sauna and the other in the large main room.
According to the Teekkari Union of Tampere sauna master Lauri Löyttyniemi, the absolute best improvement is to connect the sauna to the district heating network.
“The facilities are really great, and they have been brought up to the 2020s in maintenance costs and usability. The use of the facilities is more sensible,” says Löyttyniemi.
The sauna now mainly runs on district heat instead of the electrical resistors that replaced insufficient and broken ground heat, and the ventilation is automated.
Iiro Parhankangas, the administrative manager of the Teekkari Union of Tampere and the person responsible for the sauna project, is particularly pleased with the transfer of the kitchen and the improvement of the framework for the performing technique, i.e. solid technology that supports the band and the sound mixer. The space is in versatile use, so for example the concept of an open kitchen and investing in acoustics make it easier to organize Sitz parties, Sillis brunches and techno parties.
The importance of the Teekkarisauna to the teekkari community is enormous, and it plays an important role in, for example, fresher education.
“Even though we charge rent for the sauna, this is still our own space. Everyone is welcome here and at sauna events you will get to know new people from different fields and years of study. We are proud of it, and this place hold many memories of teekkari culture from over the decades,” he says.
Parhankangas says that the Teekkari Union of Tampere is seeking to make sure that the rent of the space would not rise after the renovations. Because of the changes to the heating system, the operating cost data can only be monitored next year, so at this point only guesses can be made about the future costs.
Facilities fit for a teekkari
Tanel Tiainen, a former project manager from Taraki, says that despite the challenges of donation materials and services, the work on the site itself went well. It was easier to beat the challenges when the place has been and still is personally so important.
“It was a pleasure to work on this project. The foundation and the teekkaris trusted me, and we were allowed to work on the space in peace. When the final touches are done, this will definitely be the place to have a sauna night for sure.”
Parhankangas adds that Tiainen’s work has been invaluable in the project, because as a student in Tampere he has understood both the purpose of the sauna and its actual use and needs. In fact, efforts have been made to make the premises as durable as possible, in the words of Tiainen, “fit for a teekkari”.
Of course, the opening of the new sauna was accompanied by a sip of cut brandy. The booking calendar has already been filled and fast, so in the next few weeks it will be time to focus on the decor: after all, the sauna still needs tables, chairs and coat racks, for example. Inherited heirlooms, such as the Jallupöllö, the golden billet, the Ilpo jersey and the Kelpo Teekkari locker must be brought back home. The first sauna evening of the brand-new sauna will be celebrated on November 24th.
Next year, volunteer work in the sauna yard will be begin. The exteriors are washed, and service painted as needed, the roof is coated and the terrace is expanded. Another hot tub has been donated to the sauna for the most congested nights.