Nordicum - Real Estate Annual Finland 2019 - Page 35

Veturitie, has a permitted building volume of approximately 67,000 floor square metres, encompassing commercial premises, office spaces and homes. “In addition to the Start-Up area, there are still available plots on the southside of the Tower Area that will undergo develop- ment at certain point,” Sahi says, adding that Senate is one of the main land own- ers in the area. The winning proposal will be used as the basis for preparing a city plan that will serve as the framework for the devel- opment of the Start-Up Area. Construction is planned to begin in 2020–2021. Residential Reach The construction of Railyard Quarters, however, already kicked off this autumn. Located north of the Tower Area, this res- idential area will provide homes for 3,000 residents. “Railyard Quarters will be a sizeable community with focus on quality living all around,” Sahi believes. According to Sahi, all development in Central Pasila – whether past, present or future –really revolves around one thing: the ability of the State and the City of Helsinki to see eye to eye on the evolution of the area. “We’ve had a long collaboration with the City – and the results have been out- standing.” Otaniemi: Total Package Another key area where Senate has lots of land and major plans is Otaniemi, located in Espoo – and the home to innovation uni- versity Aalto. Otaniemi is also one of the most formidable hi-tech/innovation clusters in Northern Europe. While Aalto University Properties manage the actual campus properties, Senate holds sway over many research and office premises in the area – and in all major under- takings Aalto, Senate and the City of Espoo work in close collaboration to secure the best outcome. Real Estate Development Manager Emmi Sihvonen says that the idea here is to diversify land use considerably. She explains that as the State functions in Otaniemi are becoming more compact, premises are becoming available for new purposes. “Our main objective is to boost resi- dential solutions in Otaniemi, and then add also services to create a more diverse com- munity,” she says. The Perfect Mix A more mixed environment could include e.g. restaurants, shops, cafés and a variety of local jobs. “Linking with the new metro sta- tion, there is a new shopping center which opened its doors in autumn 2018 – and this has already contributed to the diversification of the local services,” says Sihvonen, add- ing that a lot of the upcoming development effort focuses in the vicinity of the metro sta- tion (and along the express tram line which is also in the works). So far, it’s mostly Aalto students that call the neighborhood home – but there’s room for thousands more. Presently, there are about 4,000 residents, but the City of Espoo is hoping to add as much as 7,500. “We’re talking about a development that features hundreds of thousands of square metres and the creation of a well- rounded, real community,” Sihvonen says, pointing out that the undertaking requires a careful balance between, for instance, the architectural legacy of the neighbourhood, nature conservation and the various com- mercial and residential efforts. Northern Lights Beyond the Helsinki Metropolitan Area, there are plenty of interesting projects, as well. For example, there is Senate-led devel- opment in Turku, Tampere and Oulu. “The redevelopment of Oulu railway station and its surroundings is one consider- able undertaking at the moment,” says Mauri Sahi, adding that Senate has a strong pres- ence all around the country – and that this is not likely to change very soon. l The artist’s vision of Otaniemi area Nordicum 35