Turku Toriparkki – the world’s largest solar thermal energy storage system
Turku Toriparkki, which Turku residents have spoken a lot about, was completed in December 2020 as a result of a long process. The two-storey underground parking garage has more than 600 parking spaces, 20 of which are equipped with electric car charging points. Toriparkki is part of the renovation of the Turku Market Square, the next stages of which are the completion of the Market Pavilions (summer 2021) and the New Market Square (summer 2022).
What makes Turku Toriparkki special is its energy efficiency. It is a zero-energy parking garage, which means that it produces at least the amount of energy it uses. The heating of the parking garage designed by NollaE Oy utilizes the solar heat collected from the surface of the market square. The recovered thermal energy corresponds to the annual heat consumption of about 560 detached houses, which at the same time makes Toriparkki one of the largest solar thermal energy storage systems in the world.
The ventilation of Turku Toriparkki was implemented with ETS NORD domestic Recair air handling units. Caverion acted as the building technology contractor for the project and Timo Vainio as the project manager. Vainio says that Recair’s air handling units were the only viable option for very demanding spaces. The size of the machines was so massive (air volumes 10 and 13.5 m3) that they were delivered to be assembled on site. The engine rooms functioned as blowing chambers, i.e., air was blown from the engine room through holes in the wall into the hall. The blowing directions also varied and in some situations the blowing had to be directed straight up from the silencer.
“The project was very challenging, but thanks to the good cooperation and the flexibility of ETS NORD, it worked out well,” Vainio says. There were a few changes in the delivery time, but they were also resolved, because ETS NORD was able to keep the machines in the Tuusula warehouse waiting for delivery.
Pictures: Turku Toriparkki, illustrative pictures