Urban Toolbox

The Vision and Toolbox for the Future Seinäjoki City Center provides a framework for developing the city as a socially sustainable, active and green city with a human scale. Itis the result of a two-year research process of urban analysis and conceptual development realized by OOPEAA in collaboration with the City of Seinäjoki as the commissioning client and Gehl as an expert on matters of the social dynamics of urban public space. A series of three workshops gave also the citizens of Seinäjoki an opportunity to actively engage in the process.

Today, shopping centers with retail services clustered in locations outside of the city center present a challenge to the traditional understanding of the livelihood of cities as places of commerce. However, cities as urban places are really about much more than about just shopping and retail services. People need services, cafes, restaurants, offices and places of work, and above all, they need places that support social interaction, places where to meet friends, skate board, play ball, do barbeque, and just simply to live in the everyday.

An Urban Toolbox of architectural tools specifically designed for developing the city as a well-balanced urban place is a key element of the Vision for the Future City. It provides a wide-ranging palette of tools for architectural interventions of various scales to be applied in various combinations depending on the context and the desired effect. The goal is to create a city that provides an accessible and inclusive urban place for people to live and work in and offers a richly layered and well-balanced environment for future growth.

The Vision has been deliberately formulated to serve as an inspiration rather than as a set of guidelines and instructions. It presents a library of possible alternative ways of doing things and illustrates the potential of interventions of various scales to support the city in its future growth in a way that makes it a place in which people feel good to live and work in. It aspires to inspire people to make their city the best possible place it can be. While the vision was created to address the needs of the Seinäjoki City Center, the sixth fastest growing city in Finland, the Urban Toolbox offers a set of tools that can be applied to other cities as well.

You can find the book on the Seinäjoki Vision and Urban Toolbox in English here.