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The land use in Otaniemi under discussion in ABE

On Friday 5.12.2014 the key stakeholders of Otaniemi area came together to discuss the future of Otaniemi in Aalto Built Environment Lab.
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A group of key stakeholders of Otaniemi area gathered togehter in Aalto Built Environment Lab (ABE) Space in Urban Mill on Friday. Representatives from Espoo city planning, Aalto University campus management were present alongside big Otaniemi land owners, the Aalto University Properties and Senate Properties. Students were represented by Aalto University Student Union and the Swedish speaking nation Teknologföreningen, and the habitants were represented by Otaniemi-Seura. Also a group of researchers from the Land Use Planning and Urban Studies group, YTK, was present. This was the first time for the key stakeholders to meet all together regarding the development of Otaniemi.

Otaniemi area is changing fast. The coming metro station and concentration of Aalto University campus in the area are driving the change. Several plans and development projects are on the way. Alongside the new building for Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture, more apartments and services are planned to the area.

The stakeholders have many views regarding the development of the area. From the point of view of city planning, it is important that the different views are taken into consideration and the area can be developed together. In this way the land use has a more sustainable base and it caters to the needs of the different parties. The Friday event was starting a dialogue to make cooperation possible. This process is also a part of Energizing Urban Ecosystems research project.

On Friday the different groups told about their development projects, wishes and views regarding the future of Otaniemi. After this, different themes were discussed, building apartments, services and environment, among others. The discussion was active and it was decided that the process will continue next spring.

The event was important also for the development of Aalto Built Environment Laboratory. The functionality of the space was tested for the first time in a real land use planning process. The visualisation possibilities of ABE space were well utilized in the presentations of the parties and in facilitating the discussion.

More information: Aija Staffans, YTK, Aalto Built Environment Lab.

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