Lemminkäinen as manufacturer of concrete products in 1911–2012
Staircases and other concrete products were in Lemminkäinen’s product range already in the early stages of the company. Lemminkäinen brought about a radical change in the field of apartment block construction, by commencing the production of precast concrete staircases.
Soon after its establishment, Asfaltti Oy Lemminkäinen expanded its operations from asphalt to concrete works. In its workshops in the Merisatama district of Helsinki, Finland, the company manufactured terrazzo staircase steps, which soon became the company’s main product.
Lemminkäinen’s staircase production received a considerable boost in 1929, when the company’s cement works were transferred from Merisatama to Hakaniemi. In addition to manufacturing steps, the company installed them in buildings and also built staircase landings and floors, at first in Helsinki and before long, right across the country. Before the Second World War, windowsills, cable channels and well rings were also manufactured at the Hakaniemi works. After the war, terrazzo washbasins and different kinds of slabs were added to the company’s growing list of products.
Industrial production of precast concrete staircases began in the 1950s
The most recent phase in staircase production in Finland began in 1954, when Lemminkäinen was the first company in the country to start manufacturing complete pre-fabricated concrete staircase units. The beginning of industrial serial production marked a radical turning point in the construction of apartment buildings.
In the mid-1960s, production was transferred from Hakaniemi to a modern concrete products factory in Tuusula. Later, the production of concrete products and precast concrete staircases was transferred to dedicated production facilities.
Major concrete projects of the 1980s included the stone works for the facade and interior of the Bank of Norway, as well as the terrazzo works at the Central Station in Stockholm.
The concrete department underwent a significant expansion in 1996, as the staircase production of two Partek factories was added to it.
Lively times for concrete products in the 2000s
The unit continued making staircases, terrazzo slabs, concrete slabs and paving stones. It also carried out special contracts in Finland, Sweden and Norway. The operations were at their peak in the 2000s, when the concrete business expanded through acquisitions and a revival of the building construction business in general.
As Lemminkäinen re-organised its operations, it sold the concrete business to Rudus in 2012.