Nordicum - Real Estate Annual Finland 2013 - Page 29

Three Down, Three to Go November 2012 also marked the 3rd birthday of the metro project. Over a thousand days of hard, hard work have taken place unseen by most, since only one percent of the effort is visible above the ground. However, the impact of the metro will be something very tangible indeed. Spearheading this process, there is the development of the individual metro stations and their surrounding areas. According to the original plan, the western expansion will introduce seven stations, located in Espoo at Matinkylä, Urheilupuisto, Tapiola, Otaniemi and Keilaniemi, and in Helsinki at Koivusaari and Lauttasaari. There is also a reservation made for Niittykumpu station, but nothing is certain as of yet, says Kokkinen. “We are doing excavation in Niittykumpu and would like very much to go all the way there.” Located between Matinkylä and Urheilupuisto stations, Niittykumpu was previously only an option for future construction, but it might be viable build and fund the Niittykumpu metro station simultaneously with the other stations. Smart Traffic It is already quite clear that the metro will bring a totally different kind of cohesion to the regional rail transport system of Southern Espoo. It is estimated that over 100,000 passengers will use the metro daily and that around 60,000 will cross the border between Helsinki and Espoo every day. According to estimates, the busiest stations are likely to be Tapiola, Matinkylä and Lauttasaari. Olavi Louko, Director of Technical and Environment Services for the City, says that the City of Espoo is expecting for the metroline to add a welcome dynamic element to the communities nearby the metro station – and also to areas which are a little further off. “The new Suurpelto community, for example, is only a couple of kilometres away from the nearest station and electrically charged e-buses can be used in the feeder traffic,” he says. The west metro will also run as an automatic right from the beginning. The Helsinki metro will go automatic even before the completion of the western expansion. The automatic system will make train traffic safer and faster, with increased frequency. To begin with, the shortest interval between trains will be 2.5 minutes. Ultimately, the metro ride from Matinkylä to Ruoholahti will take 16 minutes. Triangle Travel Right from the initial planning phase, the metro project has been seen as an intriguing opportunity to bring closer together the T3 triangle: namely, Keilaniemi, Otaniemi and Tapiola. Each of these areas has left a permanent mark in history, and together they form the most potent trio in the land. First of all, the arrival of the metroline is set to transform the corporate neighbourhood of Keilaniemi – the first residential a