The development project of Tikkurila from loosely planned station community into a more sustainable station hub with new housing and better service level.
Helsinki region is growing rapidly and urban sprawl has been strong. Tikkurila is the administrative centre of the City of Vantaa and located on the main railway line from Helsinki to other parts of Finland. Tikkurila was developed in the 60s-70s and was loosely planned and built, and dominated by car parks and low storey housing.
The city started the development project in 2007 and created a plan frame for finding the possibilities to infill the station area. The city implemented dismantling renovation and increased the cross floor area by 125 000 k-m2 in 7 years. At the same time, the new Ring rail line into the airport was constructed via Tikkurila. The rail company, Finnish Transportation Agency and the city made a joint contract for planning and construction of a new station hub. It contained a new covered terminal for the rail lines, shopping centre with offices and a multi-storey car park, also P&R. The building project included also business premises to infill the economical expectations of the private investors. The site between the railroad and the street was extremely narrow, and the construction was not allowed to cause any trouble for the rail traffic. Involving all parties was a key issue in project. Now Tikkurila is a very desirable area in Vantaa, it offers good connectivity with excellent services and modern housing for new residents. Different sides of the main railroad are better connected and the quality of new public spaces is much higher than earlier.
The city developing process needs huge amount of economical resources: the planning process (by the city), the construction phase (by the building companies) and the investment of new station centre (by FTA, rail company and the city) and the shopping mall with multi storey car park (By investors).
Evidence of success
The City of Vantaa has managed to develop a more sustainable station community with combination of good planning and participation process, tempting investors into project and making joint contracts for the funding and to involve the major actors. Development process has increased the amount of new inhabitants by railroads enabling low carbon mobility instead of car-dependent urban sprawl. Both sides of main railroad are now better connected and the quality of new public spaces is much higher.
There is a lot to do since the eastern side is still undeveloped, considered mainly as a reserve for the future. The almost unused industrial rail is causing some unpredictability to the urban planning. Private investors are necessary in the implementation phase.
Potential for learning or transfer
This practice guides other cities to create a developing process for station communities with large scale participation process to infill urban structure with positive results. The city of Vantaa has good experiences in dismantling renovation. The process included joint contract with main actors and also managed to infill the economical expectations of the private investors. The attraction of Tikkurila centre station area has been very strong especially for housing development.