Estonia’s largest wooden building - lights up the future

  • Year: 2023
  • Location: Tallin, Estonia
  • Architect: Must Arhitektid
  • Photo: Martin Siplane

The Pelgulinna State Upper Secondary School is Estonia’s largest wooden building—an investment into the future in its most direct sense. It is also a learning environment that embodies the principles of sustainable architecture and inspires students to a more sustainable future.

When designing the four-storey school building, the vision was to create an organic environment and consider the students’ well-being. Inside the lobby, hall, and library, real trees grow and thrive, just like the students.

The idea behind the school’s lighting solution was to enhance the concept of creativity and sustainability. It was a collaboration between lighting designers, interior architects, the project’s primary constructors, and Fagerhult.

The lighting in the classrooms was designed in two height levels. The lower light level is square, following the room’s shape, and the layer above is designed as continuous light stripes.


“ As all the classrooms have different designs and sizes, we had to make several special solutions to create perfectly fitted shapes and lighted corners for each room,” says Siim Saadoja, Fagerhult Estonia.


The building was completed in August 2023. The same year, Pelgulinna State School won “The Wooden Building of the Year” and “The Cultural Capital Architecture Award.”