30MILES project aims to develop a network of secured harbours encouraging ecotourism practices every 30 miles in the Gulf of Finland
he basic idea of the 30MILES project is to develop small boat marinas within every 30 miles on the Eastern Gulf of Finland in order to establish a ring of developed ports.
The joint development of sustainable port services boosts up the business opportunities and in return this carefully studied cost-effective development protects the environment. Joint marketing actions also increases the awareness of new services. Such initiative encourages the development of sailing, a zero-emission tourism, but also sustainable practices for boaters to adopt. It is a new way of discovering the cross-border territory and enhancing its attractiveness.
The number of stakeholders involved in 30MILES is wide and it is one of its strengths. The project is coordinated by the Kotka Maritime Research Association Merikotka and involved from both Finland and Estonia universities, local and regional and national authorities, NGOs and also boaters, sailors, hobbyist and marinas.
On the Finnish side there are:
- South-Eastern Finland University of Applied Science
- University of Helsinki
- Cursor Ltd
- Posintra Ltd
- Finnish Sailing and Boating Federation as associate partners.
On the Estonian side:
- Ida-Viru Enterprise Centre
- Reconstruction and Operation of Eisma Port
- Viimsi and Narva-Jõesuu municipalities
- Estonian Maritime Museum
- Narva Department for City Development and Economy
- Lääne-Viru County Government as an associate partner.
300 000€ were required to set up the practice. It includes financial investments for an outside expert consultant, staff costs of the participants and expenses related to the implementation of workshops.
In addition, boaters got involved during their spare time.
Evidence of success
30MILES can be considered a good practice because it allows the gathering of numerous stakeholders from each side of the Gulf of Finland to work towards a common goal. Even a hundred of boaters and sailors got involved in the process during their free time.
The concentration of all these competencies enabled to make 12 ports and marinas in the Eastern Gulf of Finland more attractive thanks to an improved sustainable ecosystem, safer and offering new services.
Do not underestimate the roles, competence, and networks of hobbyists in development work.
Do not over-plan; leave room for surprises.
Do not let the hobbyists down; they are “developing their free time”.
Potential for learning or transfer
The process used to achieve the development of 30MILES can be applied into all development works. Indeed, the best results were achieved by bringing a wide group of stakeholders. Over 100 people participated in the planning workshops. The various boaters brought wider competences and their own networks which reinforced the cross-cutting dimension of 30MILES. The new ideas that emerged from it, helped finding new and innovative low-carbon and sustainable solutions, and make the mindset of the planning experts evolve. For example, concentration of various services into the marinas – which are located inside the cities – makes them become attractive service stations and traffic nodes but also reduces transportation emissions. Building in a demanding environment – like on an island – requires a wiser use of resources for the construction that can stimulate innovative and more sustainable ideas. In Kelnas, the thermal energy utilised from the sea reduces the need for other energy
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