London-based practice Wayward Plants has designed an urban garden that will be built as part of the Helsinki World Design Festival.

Wayward Plants' design for Helsinki
Wayward Plants' design for Helsinki

Part of a larger project know as the Plant Tram, which will take visitors through the city’s urban network picking up donated plants which will then be installed in the evolving garden. Wayward Plants will work with Dodo to create the garden which is conceived as a ‘magical rollercoaster journey’, with a wooden structure based on the wooden roller coaster found at the Linnanmäki Amusement Park that was opened in Helsinki for the 1952 Olympics. It will be built using timber recycled from the Wastelands XXXII European Students Assembly, which takes place at the Suvilahti site a few weeks prior to the construction of the garden. Alongside the large structure, 20 large mobile planters will provide seating and fruit tree planting, for a mobile orchard. A shipping container will also be converted into a temporary ‘tram station’ next to the garden; filled with maps detailing the journeys that the plants have travelled and documenting the project’s participants. The garden will sit alongside the Everyday Discoveries exhibition, which is the culmination of Helsinki World Design capital and features design from 26 countries. Following the exhibition, the garden will be reconfigured by Dodo as a permanent urban garden, creating a lasting legacy for the project.

The garden, which opens in September, will also contain exhibits from six British designers, and the exhibition is curated by the British Council.

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