Smart City Update from Helsinki: Learnings and best practices from Smart Kalasatama to new districts

The Helsinki Innovation Districts project is based on the development carried out in recent years in the new smart city districts of Kalasatama and Jätkäsaari. The idea is to expand and scale up the best practices, learnings and ways of developing smart everyday life to new districts. 

The smart city development in the brownfield districts in Helsinki’s Kalasatama and Jätkäsaari has provided the city with opportunities to gain learnings and pilot the newest technologies for smart urban life, supporting carbon neutrality. 

Helsinki’s innovation company Forum Virium has piloted various smart energy, mobility and everyday services in these two districts, e.g. automated buses and smart sharing of spaces.

Now the best learnings and methods used in the development of these innovative areas  are to be implemented also in older, suburban districts of Helsinki. In practice, this means the launch of a number of development projects in Malmi, Pasila, Mellunkylä and Malminkartano-Kannelmäki, in which residents are invited to participate. 

The districts participating in the project are Malmi, Pasila, Malminkartano-Kannelmäki and Mellunkylä, all of them having relevant themes of their own.

  • Malmi: Smart lighting, street space analytics and resident experience.
  • Pasila: 5G technology and city information model, logistics during construction and guidance.
  • Malminkartano-Kannelmäki: The sharing economy of facilities, lighting, food and green infrastructure.
  • Mellunkylä: Wood construction, cost-effective carbon neutrality, smart housing solutions and cooperation with housing companies.

These projects will involve the testing and implementation of new smart and digital solutions, the aim of which is to make the lives of the residents of Helsinki easier and the planning of services user-centered and efficient, while promoting carbon-neutral living and giving rise to new business. 

The project is being carried out in cooperation with city residents, companies, various City units focusing on urban and economic development, and research institutions. The aim is to increase the City’s, companies’ and residents’ understanding of new technologies, such as smart & clean solutions that facilitate carbon neutrality, that have notable scaling and business potential, especially in older city districts. The pilot and development operations are coordinated by Forum Virium, and the aim is to implement the best solutions in multiple areas.

Photo: Lauri Rotko, The City of Helsinki