Tallinn to launch a “participation hub” in the city centre

The Estonian capital, Tallinn, is creating what it calls “a unique city centre engagement centre to facilitate the participation of citizens in the process of shaping the city”, the city government announced.

“The participation hub will host discussion events and exhibitions introducing urban space solutions by Tallinn’s urban planners, architects, strategists and other city officials whose daily work relies on engaging the public,” the city government said in a statement.

The hub is scheduled to open as a gallery in September 2022 and as a co-creation space in 2023.

“The creation of a participation hub bringing together different stakeholders will certainly foster meaningful discussions between the city, developers, professionals and residents. It will help create a better urban space for all in the future,” Andrei Novikov, a deputy mayor of Tallinn, said.

“The concept of such a co-creation space is unique in Estonia, with Stockholm and Aalto University in Espoo as examples in the region.”

A rendering of the hub’s interior. Image by the Tallinn City Government.

According to the city government, the participation hub is an exhibition and co-creation space that expands to the cityscape “with the objective of facilitating residents’ participation in the processes of urban design and promoting meaningful discussion”.

Developed in international cooperation

“Innovative digital tools will be set up in the centre, enabling complex urban planning processes to be addressed in a more accessible way. This will create a better basis for quality debate and decision-making in spatial planning and zoning.”

A rendering of the hub’s interior. Image by the Tallinn City Government.

The hub will be located in the neighbouring building of the Tallinn City Office at Kaarli puiestee 1, where the Tallinn Strategic Management Office already operates.

“To ensure the new participation hub will have both a high-quality form and content, the interior architecture, technical needs and event programme will be developed in international cooperation. The project partners are the municipalities of Tallinn and Helsinki, Tallinn University of Technology and Aalto University. The project team consists of researchers and experts in the field.”

The establishment of the hub is also part of Tallinn’s European Green Capital 2023 programme, the city government said. It is one of the key outcomes of the joint Tallinn-Helsinki GreenTwins pilot programme and part of the large FinEst Twins project, supported by the European Regional Development Fund and the Estonian ministry of education and research.

Cover: Many real estate development projects are underway in Tallinn, such as the Luther Quarter. Rendering by Studio Mezza.

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