Nordicum - Real Estate Annual Finland 2014 - Page 20

Reinventing the City New urban revolution is cooking in the fringe areas Urban regions have undergone significant changes in the past few decades – and the speed is only increasing. To try and predict some of these changes, one needs concrete data and top-notch research. In this regard, Finland is quite fortunate as the northern nation possesses some of the most detailed data on urban form and spatial structure in the entire world. Senior Research Scientist Mika Ristimäki from Finnish Environment Institute SYKE says that there are numerous trends impacting the urban regions right now that are quite significant – but have not been discussed in public nearly enough. I nternationally, it is clear that various cities are in open competition for the best performing companies and talent, as well as major attractions and other leisurely pursuits. The situation in Finland is not any different: cities are trying to put their best foot forward to attract excellent tax-payers – both the corporate and flesh-and-blood variety – to the neighbourhood. 18 Nordicum City for Life? Mika Ristimäki subscribes, in part, to Floridian theory of increasing the appeal of the cities with buzz and perks (ranging from rich cultural offering to quality nightclubs) but he feels that the downtown is not the only game in town. “Instead of the city centre, we should pay more attention to the urban region which enables various things in different phases of life,” he says, meaning for example that while a young professionals would rather die than venture far from downtown lights, those very same people do change their minds when there’s kids in the picture. “In the city core, it is a good idea to have those places where people get together,” he says, adding that culture, for one, does