Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Jyväskylä: Lakeside Lutakko

Lake Jyväsjärvi is quiet as ever, and I try to block out the morning traffic flowing steadily above it on Kuokkala bridge. There are no boats about. Who would have thought that the weather would remain perfect for boat trips as late as November?
I stand  on the wooden pier and turn around to have a look behind me. At this time of the year, there are fewer attractions, so I finally notice the work of art on the concrete wall next to my feet. These waves are very concrete, not my imagination.
 Another work of art looms under the shadow of Kuokkala bridge. No idea who has created this huge painting on the concrete wall. The weird characters are trampling in the snow? Luckily, the original work is in pretty good condition, hardly vandalized by humans. I suddenly remember eating ice cream here in the summer, but no wonder I didn't see the painting: the ice cream van was parked right in front of it.
I arrive on the other side of the Kuokkala bridge. Kajo, a mysterious sculpture made of grey granite and glass by local sculptor and artist Kari Alonen, stops me in my tracks. You can see a faint glimmer of greenish light if you turn your eyes towards the the greenish glass seams, but otherwise the rock cube keeps its secrets. 
Returning to the harbor area, I can see there only few boats. The boating season is practically over. The brave yellow rose bushes are valiantly defending their colors against the morning greyness.
Päijänne offers cruises on its namesake Lake Päijänne only by demand. A pity, because it would have been such fun to just step aboard and go for a lake cruise in Jyväskylä right now!
The boat could take me for example to the southernmost end of Lake Jyväsjärvi, for a closer look at the Mattilanniemi, part of the university campus. I so like the pedestrian bridge across the lake!
Lutakko harbour area right next to me seems to remain a building site forever, ever since the construction of apartment buildings for this former industrial area began in 1995. The shape of the shore has changed over the years, with the Lake Jyväsjärvi diminishing in size while yielding more land for new buildings and roads. The latest developments include more apartment buildings and a hotel, in addition to the major roadworks.
The harbour pavilion (1909) houses a coffee shop which is only open during summer months, when the area is most busy and there are cruises on the lake. The building was originally much closer to the city centre but had to be demolished or moved before the roadworks for the bypass "Rantaväylä" began. Luckily, the harbour pavilion building was saved and relocated here.
The mist begins to fade from the lake and from above Jyväskylä city centre. Time for a morning walk on Rantaraitti, a popular lakeside track for both cyclists and walkers...

No comments:

Post a Comment