The aim is to create an attractive and enjoyable city of culture that is well cared for
|Above: The Director of the Master Planning Office, Markku Toivonen, presenting the proposal to the media.|
A Vision for Turku in 2031
A proposal that stresses a vibrant urban centre for Turku in 2031 has been completed by the development committee assigned the task. The vision has four core aspects regarding Turku’s development: A living centre; the riverside; historical Turku and parks; connecting thoroughfares. The Vision for Turku in 2031 aims to create an attractive and enjoyable city of culture that is well cared for.
During the winter, the committee received much constructive feedback from entrepreneurs and citizens regarding the vision. Feedback was sought in a variety of ways, including at public hearings and seminars and at the Housing and Building Fair. The updated Turku 2031 vision was published on 10 April at Turku Town Hall.
"Where and how big is the centre?"
Committee Chairman Seppo Lehtinen thanked the working group and officials that completed the challenging task and praised their performance. For Lehtinen, one of the most important issues is: How will the town centre be defined in the future?
– In many European cities the centre has changed place over the decades, and this is also true of Turku. It is important that the centre and its extent are defined. Defining will ensure future decision-makers know what to develop and what the desired vision is, Lehtinen stresses.
According to Markku Toivonen, Director of the Master Planning Office, the vision not only emphasises street planning it also focuses on the planning of other infrastructure.
– The issue concerns the planning of the social environment; how the old and new are combined effectively or how all transportation options are taken into consideration in the future, says Toivonen.
– What is clear is that the market square is a central and important element of the vision. Equally essential is planning the city as a transport hub, he adds.
Many perspectives to be considered
According to Aleksi Randell the Mayor of Turku the vision requires a change in people’s mindset.
– This is not just about town planning and other townscape details. If we do not focus now on how people use the city and what their perspectives are, how can Turku develop to become a more vibrant and more attractive place to residents, entrepreneurs and tourists from Finland and abroad?
– Turku is a project will never be complete, but in order to develop the city we must have a vision of what we want Turku to be in the future. The objectives of a vision that has clear foundations are easier to realise. Turku’s planning will also continue to see increased cooperation between residents and entrepreneurs, states Randell.
Cooperation is also emphasised by Minna Arve, Chair of the Board of the City of Turku
– The city as an organisation cannot do everything alone; the views of commercial operators and residents are required. But the city must be ready to do its share, so that the objectives of the vision can be realised.
As one such concrete measure, the vision identifies the development of a comprehensive electrical and water distribution network to help make the organisation of events easier.
The development of events is a main objective of the vision for a living centre. Minna Arve believes that the permit process would be eased by having a one-stop events office that can deal with all aspects of event planning.
– Capital of Culture year taught us much about what is required to organise enjoyable events, and how organisation can facilitate co-operation, says Development Committee Member and Town Councillor Elina Rantanen.
The Vision for Turku in 2031 will next go to the City Board for further review. For the City of Turku it is important to address the issues of the vision during this spring. In the future, the purpose of the vision is provide firm foundations for guiding the activities of the departments, bureaus and offices when making strategy and setting guidelines.
Read about the vision for 2031:
The Committee's proposal, published 10/04/2012: