Studio I Report: Infill

STUDIO I REPORT

Study of infill opportunities in Northern Haaga

 

FOREWORD

My relationship with Haaga beforehand was as follows; I used to live there for 5 years, 2005-2010,  adjacent Rohodorendon Park. I saw how the middle parts did change during the time. After that time period I commonly have went through Haaga by bus. Before this I lived for a while in Hakuninmaa and during that chapter in my life I used to change the bus at Northern Haaga mall when I was commuting to various locations. Therefore, I had a rather clear image of Haaga beforehand. However, to be honest, it might have been full of bias. During this study I clarified my view with a present reality of Haaga, and I did visit Northern Haaga few times and decided to concentrate to the North. I did do background study, checked the statistics, went there for real and combined it with all the experience and knowledge I’ve gathered during my life, and especially during the last years, and this course.

MY SCOPE

My viewpoint is from Real Estate Economics angle. My task was to find possible infill sites from Northern Haaga. However, I wasn’t purely thinking economics first. I did acknowledge there is two Haagas, southern and northern. And there is a clear difference between those. South being a rather wealthy and peaceful place to live. Moreover, it is nearer to Central Helsinki and public transportation options are grand.

Northern parts are further away from public transportation and it is more “planned”, there is this rather ugly mall that is no crown jewellery and it is not that wealthy. However, neither poor. There are a few Social Housing buildings etc.

Southern people say they live in Southern Haaga, Nothern people say they live in Haaga. That is what counts the most.

Or maybe I’m full of bias.

However, I would try to bring these two Haagas closer to each other, unite the people. I would try to put more housing to Northern parts, market priced especially. It wouldn’t solve anything if we would put social housing there also. Maybe we should put more social housing to south, however I did this study about Northern Haagas Infill possibilities. Maybe we should stop social housing and just give tenant-based subsidies for people who are in need for real. There wouldn’t be us and they. Just us. It would be a lot better system and a whole lot of studies support this. However, I won’t go deeper to that in this study.

Furthermore, it’s good to acknowledge that gentrification is lurking behind every development project. Thus, if it isn’t considered in the planning, we probably will end up being gentrifiers. We couldn’t gentrify the Southern Haaga, it is already middle-class neighbourhood. Therefore, gentrifier would eye to north. There, is still something to gentrify. And I’m not talking about gentrification as something good, something worth pursuing for. Let’s try to keep this in mind, the original inhabitants, local heritage and the nature of the area. (Moskowitz, 2017)

After all we need infill. Helsinki keeps on growing and Haaga has a grand location. I would call it as a transportation hub.

PS. I loved to live in Haaga. But to be honest I mainly slept there or stayed indoors at home, it was a grand location for me; it was in the center of my life triangle. I lived my life somewhere else. But my heart have always been where my home is. And Haaga felt like a home.

 

PRESENT REALITY, SITE VISITS

Picture 1 recognized infill locations in the start

In the start I started to study the map. Aerial images mainly. I didn’t want to check already made plans at all. I wanted to start from a clean sheet. By aerial images it was good to check possible infill locations.

After 5 possible infill sites were recognized the site visit was made.

During the site visits I got a better understanding of the public realm of Northern Haaga. I saw a lot of youngsters, pensioners and adults. Everyone seemed to be in a happy place. Area felt cozy. I was flying a drone, thus the people were interested and came to me and had a chat. There were also children playing in the green pockets in the middle of the housing area. They were having fun. Skyline was 3-4 stories high. Besides those towers in top.

After my visits (3 in total, and of course all that experience I had of the area beforehand) I thought I wouldn’t change a thing. I loved the skyline of Haaga and wouldn’t want to break it with “skyscrapers” either.

In infill area B(picture 1) was trenches left from World Wars so it was clear you couldn’t build there. Letter C, indicates the mall, I had plans to relocate it to there where the trenches were. Why is the mall where it is? Social services etc. are by the train station. Mall has a rather bad reputation, could we just move it to some better location, and start from a clean sheet? Why is it there? Does it have to be there in the future? Even though it is conserved.

In the letter D was this green pocket in the middle of the buildings that would easily accommodate two apartment buildings. Furthermore, the buildings were low-rise and +50 years of age, so it would be good to consider if it would be possible to give the housing companies allowance to build more. They could decide it by themselves. Demand for housing is sky high in Helsinki so this would ease it a bit. Adjacent to this area is maybe the best infill site, old gravel field that no one uses. At least not that many that there would be need to save it. It is roughly 1,2 ha. Furthermore, City have build a new sport ground to the Middle-Haaga, just a stone’s throw away.

In the other side of the common garden, which is by the Rohodorendon Park, is some low-rise industrial/office buildings(E). It would be good to consider the future of those plots again.

There are some ongoing plans in Haaga at the moment, for example they are increasing the amount of housing plots in northern parts and rezoning the ISKU warehouse to housing. These plans are not conflicted with the proposals in this study.

THE STUDY, methods used

GIS analyze was made in the very beginning with QGIS. I had real estate and building information, and the aerial image in the background. I did generate a model where the buildings would be marked with different colors by the age. I made a layer from the real estate registry where I could see who owns the land, City or Private. And the borders of real estates.

 

Financial analyze was made by general model I generated. Toolset I’ve developed in my job. So, I used a lot of knowledge I already had. However, some searches were made; like the market prize of building right sqm in Haaga. The price was found from the papers of City of Helsinki that were public. They had ordered an area property evaluation in 2015 from 3rd party assessor. So it is legitimate one(Municipality Law § 130). General land value according to this Catellas assessment made in 2015 is 700 €/sqm in Nothern Haaga.

Moreover, I have asked from leading lawyer of association of Finnish local and regional Authorities how long an valuation can be considered as valid; 3 years in general if there is no major matters during that time.

There would be three different scenarios with the infill. Demolishing, build to a undeveloped land or to build some extra floors to existing buildings.

CALCULATIONS

Building and renovation costs differ from case to case, therefore the numbers used were generalizations, however based to studies from RAKLI,  Osta, Vuokraa, Vaurastu (Olli Turunen & Joonas Orava), Sijoita Asuntoihin (Marko Kaarto) and conversations with several developers.

  • construction cost 3 000,00 €/sqm
  • renovation costs during 50y 1 350,00 €/sqm1000
  • sqm value=700 000,00€ (1000sqm x 700 €/sqm)
  • new building value=3 000 000,00 €
  • 1000sqm x renovation cost expense=1 650 000,00 €

=1 650 000,00 €

55,00 % of the cost of building a new new building minus renovation costs.

  • Example where we add extra floors: building has 3 stories already and 1 000 sqm. + 2 stories and we have 1 666 sqm. Rough land value increase = + 666 sqm x 700 €/sqm = 466 200 €

However, we assume that City takes half of the added value increase.

  • 466 200 / 2 = 233 100 €

 

With 233 100 € a Housing Company can for example cover maintenance and renovation costs in the future or improve the real estate other ways.

 

  •  Example where old building is demolished, and the plot is rezoned:

Value of the land increases by rezoning the land by (+666sqm)466 200 € and as above City takes half of the increased value = 233 100 €

There is major renovation and maintenance costs coming in the near future, so the real cost of the new building is

3 000 000 €– 1 350 000 € =1 650 000 €.

1 650 000 € – 233 100 € = 1 416 900

We need to take in consideration the demolishing costs as well, which are roughly 120 000 € for example building.

  • Finally ‘real cost’ of the new building is 1 416 900 € + 120 000 € = 1 536 900 €

It is assumed that the average size of the apartment is 50 sqm. New building is 1 666 sqm, and roughly 33 apartments. Cost of the new contemporary 50 sqm end demolishing option, in comparison to aged building with upcoming renovation an maintenance costs, apartment is 1 536 900 € / 33 = 46 500 €.

However, the sqm that is counted in building right sqm includes other facilities as well, not just the apartments. Hallways, bicycles and other storage rooms etc.

Nonetheless the maintenance and renovation costs will not all come when building turns 50 years, those are lodged during the years. However, the costly operations are around 50th birthday.

If rezoning would increase the housing sqm by 2 357 sqmand City wouldn’t cut the value increase the new building would be ‘free’. (minus demolishing costs etc.)

 

  • Zoning of the undeveloped land = in this context  this refers to land that does not have buildings on it, e.g. forest, recreation area, gravel pitch.

Draft calculations are made with efficiency e=0.8. Reason to a nowadays rather small efficiency is that it includes everything, not only the structures that is counted to zoning e=. Area needs civic infrastructure like roads and other maintenance utilities, and parking lots. I haven’t made any precise plans, just rough drafts, recognizing the possibilities. Haaga is surrounded by public parks and recreation possibilities already, thus, housing plots would only have the adequate free space.

  • If the site A(picture 1) would be developed:

~15 000 m² area, with e=0.8 = 12 000 sqm x 700 €/sqm(Catella,2015)

= 8 400 000 €

Before rezoning the land has close to nothing value(market price), so the value increase would be more than 8 million. City gets that all as a landowner. However, there is tremendous bill to be paid when constructing the civic infrastructure, furthermore, schools, daycare, nursing, parks and other recreation areas, health and social services, community halls etc. And production costs of all the services occupants need(Cullingworth, Nadin, Hart, Davoudi,Pendlebury, Vigar, Webb and Townsend. 2015). It’s not just a profit. City of Helsinki has already paid a lot when they have developed the Middle-Haaga etc. Thus, it is reasonable act to build more housing to the area after all those already made and paid, and upcoming, upgrades to the area.

Value increase of gravel field in area D would be as set below if rezoned for housing with area efficiency of 0.8.

 

  • Area ~ 1,2 ha

e=0,8 for whole area including infrastructure etc.

= 9 600 sqm x 700 €/sqm = 6 720 000 €

Moreover, existing civic infra is already present.

Furthermore, the added value for triangular shaped area in the middle of the suburban area would be as follows;

  • Area ~0,55 ha

e=1,0 as it is a bit denser plot.

= 5 500 sqm x 700 €/sqm = 3 850 000 €

Car parking

As there would be a lot of new residents there would be a need for a new parking plots as well. Nowadays streets are already packed of cars in Haaga. Extra space and on the street parking are in use. However, as City of Helsinki develops the public transportations system at quick space and Haaga has a grand public transportation already, moreover, a underlined spot in the future transportation plans. New light rail starts soon, buses will exist in the future even if those might be electric, and train serves a lot of people, new extra rail track to Turku might be reality soon and this would make trains serve more frequently. However, they are already here, aerial transportation units, aerial taxis. Future of transportation is nowhere clear.

When traffic and transportation plays a significant part in the future it would be just foolish to skip it in this draft as well.

As there is not a lot of certainties in the future of transportation, I wouldn’t force cars underground. It is costly maneuver. What if we don’t need that parking space after 50 years anymore? At the moment you can’t even live underground, it’s declined by the regulations. It pays a lot to put cars underground, and it can be seen in the prices of the apartments. How would we use the space in the future?

What if we are flying by drones in the future? Technology is already here. Parking would be on the roofs. Parking plots, or at least big number of those, would be released to use other ways. It would free a lot of ground space to other uses. (https://www.airbus.com/innovation/Urban-air-mobility-the-sky-is-yours.html, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HQeqQFWu17k, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0iaRed439q8 )

From my view there is no point in locating cars to underground at the price it costs. Cars would be parked to parking facility building in the back of one block in my proposal. As driving an automobile wouldn’t be encouraged people would use public transportation more. Constructing for cars creates only more traffic, as it is proved many times before. It is also true we need cars and it is maybe the most propable future scenario where we drive less as individuals, but just sheer number of people increases such a lot that the amount of traffic inevitably increases. Moreover, services go all the time further from the people when healthcare and social services and even the food markets etc are relocated to larger units.  Furthermore, the people who have children have different kind of needs, as well as elderly, invalids etc. . There is a lot of different examples of why we need to move more in the future. There will still be only 24 hours a day.

(Ståhle, 2016.  Mikoleit.Purckhauer, 2011.p.32. Alexander, Ishikawa, Silverstein,1977.p.120. Rydin,2011.p.35)

 

DRONE model was made of one particular area adjacent to Rohodorendon Park. 3d Model was generated using Phantom 4 Pro drone and DroneDeploy professional software that uses photogrammetry to create a 3d model from the images and point clouds. The model is formed of 1 000 georeferenced aerial images taken from 50 m above the ground level. With the 3d model and already recognized infill locations I was able to “drop” the buildings to the model with Autodesk Infraworks 360 and check how the infill would affect the neigbourhoods skyline, esthetics and built environment. To check how infill fits with the neighbourhood.

Video of the model can be seen here:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ysJCocPZE9r_VoUoUna6-KBkhVrAajra/view?usp=sharing

(set quality to 1080p)

CONCLUSION

Even though Haaga lacks a bit of character it still is a very good place to live and seems to be in harmony with itself. Not everyone is willing to live in middle of hassle. It has a grand location and maybe it would be good to fill it a bit more just because of that. No reason to waste such a great location. There is a lot of potential for infill for sure. Especially those locations that were pinpointed in this rather short and quickly made study, and those that are taken in consideration, and that have implementations underway, by City of Helsinki.

REFERENCES

Alexander, Ishikawa, Silverstein, Jacobsen, Fiksdahl-King and Angel(1977). A Pattern Language. p.120. New York: Oxford University Press.

Cullingworth, Nadin, Hart, Davoudi,Pendlebury, Vigar, Webb and Townsend (2015). Town and Country Planning in the UK. p.167. Routledge: Oxon.

Mikoleit, A. and Purckhauer, M.( 2011). Urban Code. p.32. Cambridge, The MIT Press.

Moskowitz, P (2017). How to kill a city. New York: Nation Books.

Rydin, Y(2011). The Purpose of Planning. Bristol: Policy Press

Ståhle, A(2016). Closer Together. Årsta: Dokument Press.

PRACTICAL 5

GIS

PRACTICAL 5

         Groupwork by:

Juho Hänninen, Arttu Antila, Tommi Henriksson & Henri Mikkola

In the 5th assignment we did get familiar with words that are hip and pop; segregation and gentrification. At start a grand Tilastokeskus dataset was given with the handout files. We had access to education and income data etc. There were a lot of possibilities open and some great maps to be made. However, studies we would make was a bit narrowed at the start, the task given was to examine the socio-economic structure of the Helsinki Metropolitan Region.

It was a rather interesting task. Everyone has these images of different areas and suburbs, would the data support these images? Or are we just so used to prejudice?

At the beginning data was downloaded so we could get familiar with it. After studying the attribute table, we managed to recognize the important fields that would be needed to succeed in the task. Those were for example the level of education and income. After that the data was cleaned up; there were fields with value -1 and the clean up was made by using select features by expression tool in the attributes table.

After the clean up it was time to start creating something new; using the field calculator it was possible to calculate for example the share of residents with University degree. Again, it was noticed how important it is to remember to tick all the correct boxes…

Next in style tab class boundaries was set to 4 classes and with conditional statement we were possible to pick just one of those, poorest or richest quarter etc. After reclassification new layer was made with only the classes and data we wanted.

Now we were ready to study all different socio-economic values and maps made with these tools. After playing with the toolbox given we had some rather fine maps done with HeatMap effect.

AND

It wasn’t just prejudice, data did support images we had in our heads, though not entirely. After picking the right value differentiation etc. it was clear that the wealthiest academic people slide to the west and the poorest and least educated were at the areas in the east + Espoo Centre. However, these possible class differences weren’t clearly visible before setting the values and classes to exact bearings. Furthermore downtown or Westend didn’t show any colors basically, it seemed that the Central Helsinki was in a proper socio-economic balance(or just gentrified). Should we just rely on the data? It is good to pinpoint that without the right values research gives us no signs of segregation or what so ever. Basically it is possible to tell the story we want to.

But if we don’t trust the data and the hard values what should we trust then?

Mid-Term Task: infill, land use, segregation, gentrification

URBAN CHALLENGE STUDIO 1

Mid-Term Task

Tommi Henriksson

Infill.

I used to live in Haaga from 2005 to 2010(below). Apartment building where my home was located was build in 2005 and I was the first occupant. It was Nuorisosäätiö owned real estate and therefore it was for young people who had a job. For persons aged 18-30 and occupant had to leave the building when they turn 35 years. ARA was supporting the Housing Company and they needed to fill certain criteria set by ARA. Basically, the company was meant to work for common good, for the young people, offering affordable apartments for young people who were at start of their journey. It wasn’t a student building, tenants were mostly young people who had a job.

Figure 1 Aerial image from 2005. Nuorisosaatio building marked.

When my base was at Haaga I loved the area. It was perfect for me. It was in the middle of my life triangle; Oulunkylä – Leppävaara – Ruskeasuo. Public transportation was grand and recreation opportunities were great , there were no disorders or any kind of bad behavior present. There was this rather large area that was basically no man’s land- or wasteland- or it seemed like a brownfield. In the other, further corner(north) of this brownfield area there was a gas station when I moved but it was closed soon. They did build a few blocks there, it was the first stage(well actually the first stage was all the planning beforehand and cutting the trees etc.). I often pass the area nowadays when I’m commuting to Oulunkylä to see my parents. You wouldn’t recognize the area if you wouldn’t just know it’s the same place.

There has been major redevelopment, or should I say development, project in the area. In the past Haaga was divided to two very different area, North and South, but now there is a third one; Middle-Haaga. The aerial images show it rather clearly.

Between Northern and Southern parts there have been a clear difference, in everything. South is the old villa town and North was developed by planners a lot later. South is academic, and North is working class. South has owner occupied market priced housing and North social housing. South is almost part of the central Helsinki and has good transportation opportunities and North has barely adequate transportation etc. The difference is indisputable. In south people say they live in South-Haaga, in North they say they live in Haaga.

Figure 2 2010

 

 

As I have followed how the middle-part has been developed during the years, I’ve been able to see how it has transformed the areas look thoroughly. Now it is flourishing life(?maybe, at least more than in past), there is a sports ground, park, playground etc. And there used to be only the brownfield look-a-like.

 

 

                                              Figure 3 2018

But wait a bit.  I did look to an older aerial image, what there used to be before I moved to the area:

Figure 4 2001

And it showed how the area did look for real, it was a green heart in the middle of Haaga, but at the same time edge space that did divide Haaga. Some may argue about was this infill good or bad. As far as I can see it still was a remarkable upgrade. For starters it does bring North and South closer, there is recreation possibilities for everyone and -still- plenty of green space left.

Second matter I would like to pinpoint from near past of Haaga is the new bus-line 550 which started when I moved to the neighbourhood. In the very start of the line it didn’t serve during the weekends at all, it was clearly the test period. Soon it started to run everyday, at the start it was running every 15 min but as we know nowadays it serves every 5 min and operates until late. AND of course, there is the light-rail coming soon that serves basically the same route. However, the light rail is for people who live in the south or near middle. Northern parts that are dominated by social housing are – again – far from good public transport.

So what has happened during the 21st century has been an upgrade in my opinion, but I still can see segregation piling.  Infill studies would be great and at the same time critically analyze the land use in the northern parts, is there possibilities to upgrade the infra or could the infill opportunities be recognized. More market prized housing to northern parts? If we put social housing more there it wouldn’t solve anything. However, gentrification is lurking behind every corner if we do this…

Figure 5 Ligh-rail. Radius 300m and 600m.

At first, I would like to make research on infill possibilities that lie in North. Is there any? There is already a commercial center in the North, and to be honest I haven’t visited there for ages. In the past it was a common suburban center, with some shops and bars, after you visited there you certainly would have a vision how the public life happened there during different seasons and days.

Certainly, I would pay attention to North. Or to Middle. Or both. Infill and different land uses. Recognizing different aspects of demands the area might keep inside. How the New-Middle-Haaga could be interconnected with Haaga residents.

And of course, there is the Huopalahti Station, which is a busy transport hub. But it is only a hub. If we would calculate the people the research would show great numbers, like the station would be buzzing life. But it’s only a transport hub. People come and go, they stay for 5 min, the length it takes to wait for the next transport.

 

PS. I just solved the puzzle and now I’m able to drone the area, create a 3d model of the material and put the new infill building blocks in 3d to the exact locations in CAD. I can’t wait to try this in Haaga! THRILLED! It’s a shame that I don’t have time to sleep nowadays because these grand inventions take all of my time :).

DENSITY

DENSITY

GOOD OR BAD

Urban Challenge Studio 1

Density from land politics and economics viewpoint is a key to everything. Or is it? Simply from municipality’s point of view it is, as far as it doesn’t affect the healthcare, services, accessibility, transport, wellbeing etc. Basically what can be said is that with density certain important values WILL increase like:

  • Services, more people in a dense area will provide the essential base for entrepreneurs and different firms to succeed in the area. With a sprawl it won’t be viable for any economic behaviour. When there is not enough population there is not enough demand for shops, barbers, boutiques, libraries, parks etc.

Without demand nothing happens.

  • Civil costs. Municipalities need to build the infra to the people, with low-density areas there is not much people in close proximities and distances grow so that it is overpriced to build the infra; roads, pipes, wires, sewage etc. Healthcare, public transport and education costs increase as well. Fire service, ambulance and police need to cope with the sprawl as well. And everyone pays providing of these(taxes).

It seems like density is a solution to everything. Of course first we need to make an assumption that area have enough vitality, viability and other assets that people will move there even with a (too)high density. Actually at first the developers need to get involved, we can plan whatever we want but someone need to implement those grand plans.

Let’s take for example municipality which is located at the outskirts of metropolitan area. Those matters above are true, but if municipality just increases the density will the viability of the location increase? Will people still move in, if they need to live in apartment buildings in the central that looks like all the other places, that has no own character? Will they still move just because of the cheaper housing prices? Does the average person who moves there still appreciate the old town look, community feeling and the nature, or are the new multistory buildings appealing, pop and in? Are the cheap prices just enough?

They might move and keep on living their lives somewhere else, until they breakdown. Main reason would probably be the daily commute. Their children would propably show symptoms and they would do stupid things, violence, drugs, alcohol, bullying, in overall bad behaviour. Reason(one of): Their parents are never home because of long commute and when they are, they are too tired to raise their children, or do anything else at all. So densely build area is not everything, there is a need for those other ingredients as well.

Or let’s take another example; Single housing unit plot, area of the plot 282 m², has not found a buyer, even though location is rather ok(capital area), and you can build a big house on it. Although it would fill the whole site. Is this too dense in a single house scale?

Or this real life example(many of those) where developer don’t even want to build more, they rather build(buy) by old detailed plan and pay a little less. They don’t even want a rezoning of the site. Fact is that land is priced by the amount there can be build. And developers have done their homework and know how much they can sell and what is just too risky.

How about gentrification? After infill happened there was a new building in a rather grand location which was build “ full” before. The prices were sky high in the new apartments, and the jobs of the working class were somewhere else, no point to pay extra for the commute. Inequality cap increases, sprawl gets some more steam, and people pay the bill. Even if the prices would be at modest level the reality is that jobs would be somewhere else for those who are not brokers, bankers, leaders, actors etc. So why pay the extra from the rather small salary just that you get the enjoyment of everyday commute.

Maybe what I’m trying to say in this short blog post is that density is answer to nothing. However I think it is a really handy tool to have in toolbox. But there must be all the other ingredients as well. Jobs, hobbies, services, FRIENDS, atmosphere, nature, parks, recreation areas. You might say that these will come when the density is good enough. Would they? Maybe. And what is too dense?  Happiness is a good meter. But it is even harder one. How about community feeling? When people know their neighbours, they trust each other and have in general feeling of safety, good community is healthy one also. Social life would flourish. When there is no community feeling, there is no community, when there is no community there is no sense of a place.

Just saying.

STUDIO ! BEYOND WIKIPEDIA

BEYOND WIKIPEDIA

We were given a task to make a survey of something that would tell something of the development of Haaga during the past century. At first I started to make cadastral survey, tried to trace mother real estates and particular how those had fragmented into small parcels and blocks during the time. There would propably have been stories behind numbers that would’ve made it possible to figure out something and make a rather good conclusion from that.

However I decided to change the subject to more interesting one. I decided to study how real estate prices had evolved during the time. Real Estate Record would be my source in that. Record which is maintained by National Land Survey was established on 1980’s, so no data was on books of the real estate sales before. Thus I had ‘only’ thirty years of data.  However it wasn’t a lot, 9 deals were found during the years, I only took real estate sells which did not have buildings on them, pure land only. If there would be a building it would be much more time consuming to make the evaluation.

In those 9 sales were some deals which should not be taken into research because of certain characteristics like industry plot, zoning differences, old gas station plot with a probability to have contaminated soil etc.

Sales that had similar attributes; date, building right €/sqm with a living cost index update

First, after I got the data, I did drive the data through living cost index so the values would somehow be comparable to present day. 6 deals had similar attributes, so it would be possible to maybe make some kind of conclusion. However I still wouldn’t put too much weight to this. This is just a scratch to the surface, not a proper research.

And of course it should be acknowlged that City of Helsinki basically only leases the residential plots, so I should have all those land lease contracts and use those numbers as well. Furthermore the city was usually the other partner in deals, and it always make a certain distortion to the values(e.g.zoning monopoly and legal rights and the fact that city try to keep prices at modest levels).

And often there is a lot of matters behind the scenes that numbers won’t tell to us…

Studio I – Reconstructing Haaga

Studio I – Reconstructing Haaga

Task was given: Make a survey on Haaga’s history and heritage and figure out the form of Haaga before people arrived to an area. What was the state of the Haaga pre-human.

As I’m a Land Surveyor it was rather clear how to find some proper documents. From National Land Survey of Finlands cadaster. From there I could find old maps and cadastre documents. How the land units(real estates)

were divided back in the days, how large the real estates were and were there many of those. And from the old maps, old maps are usually piece of art,and tell a lot more than 1000 words.

Problem that I acknowledged was that “ancient” documents might not have been digitalized and originals or copys might rest in underground vault in Jyväskylä. So I was happy to find some good documents available that answered a lot of the questions and I was able to reconstruct Haaga eventually.

First of all I did found the real estates that were registered in the area in the 18th century. There were basically three of those, registration date was not known in two but one was registered in 1780. Total area of those three was about 1km². So basically the whole Haaga area. I don’t know the exact ownership of the area, however that information is also possible to get from NLS(€).

I also found some old maps from 1906, 1909 and so on from the cadastral. However I was looking a bit older one’s and wasn’t pleased with those. However the greatest map I did find from my bookshelf ( I have plenty of old map books). Book was “Sadan vuoden mitat” and there were a great King of Swedens old map from the 18th century. The map was so detailed that you can rather easily figure out how the area looked back in the days: low hills, brooks and woods. The Turuntie was already present.

It was back in the 18th century when King of Sweden sent his land surveyors to Finland, it was the start of the Finnish cadaster and NLS. After that land was taxed and king had a proper registry of his lands. There have also been three major land reforms since that time(Sarkajako, Isojako, Uusjako).

I also found this old document from 18th century as well, it is hard to read because of the handwriting and of course because it is in Swedish. Like almost all of the old documents. Finns have also a language difficulties when reading the old documents!

 

USP Excursion 12.13.9.2018 Film

A film I made of the footage I gathered during the excursion trip in mid September 2018. I used action camera, drone and S9. First day was so windy I did not get to air at all, second was also windy one but I took acknowledged risk.  Filmed by Phantom 3 Advanced which is my older drone(Phantom 4 Pro is the ‘better’ one) – I trust it + it is served really well so I dare to take some risks with it.

Flights or anything else wasn’t planned as usually when I film and when I use pre-programming and auto-pilot. Because of that, the footage is not that smooth.

Anyway enjoy!

Excursion: Helsinki-Espoo 12.-13.9.2018

I had big plans for the trip: to make a film of it with a drone, ActionCam, and my S9. Everything looked good in the morning -but wasn’t- there was super windy conditions. Though honestly speaking it was a really nice weather and the wind did not disturb at all. Except my drone felt so uncomfortable that I had no footage from the air on Tuesday.

Next day it wasn’t that windy, even though I wouldn’t go to the air normally in that wind speed neither. Sun was shining and the landscape looked grand. Drone handled the wind pretty well and I got some great footage. I have already started to edit it, but it takes a long time to get it ready. Stay tuned for that!

We started our excursion from Myllypuro, Helsinki. Bicycles were waiting us there and I hopped on. We would ride all the way to Leppävaara, Espoo. I did already know the route pretty well as I had basically spent my whole childhood in the area, until I was 23 years old and moved away from Helsinki to Tampere.

But even though I was familiar with the past of the area I didn’t know the present so well. Area have changed a lot, development have been fast. And of course it’s way different when you just commute past something compared to if you go through the same area making observations of the area. Flora and fauna, structures and people, heritage, history and present. And of course having a chat with our multidisciplinary group full of experts of different areas in the field of urban studies and planning, the built environment – was thrilling and interesting.

Maybe the most interesting observations and findings were that

– Viikinmäki is far from ‘everything’, even though it is rather close in meters to central Helsinki.

– Recently built Ring I tunnel at Leppävaara . The ‘roof’ structure have made it possible to build there. They have made same solution also in Tampere and there is plans that there will be more similar solutions in Espoo. Though it wasn’t a perfect outcome: for example on the other side was a rather big green area but it was lacking in maintenance and users as well.

-Viikki and Tali are the kind of places I would love to live, especially Tali has the right form. Nature and recreational activities are really important to my well-being. Although I was already aware of that, so it exactly wasn’t anything new. And also those areas have their problems, especially Viikki that is a bit lacking the community feeling and services are rather poor. There is no public squares or a central point. Prisma and other supermarkets are a curse word for me. Talis central point is the outstanding recreational area that is full of possibilities.

-There were some great change of uses of old structures in Tali.

– Leppävaara keeps developing and Käpylä is like time would been stopped. Haaga Centre is a new area that is pretty much fully developed at the moment, 10 years and there were just rocks, tons of rocks and a old Neste. So this has been an upgrade and a facelift for sure. Myllypuro is trying to change it’s profile. CCTV’s are not helping in that…