Location: Oulu

Type: regional planning, landuse planning, landscaping, shoreline development

Year: 2019

Organizers: City of Oulu, Cooperative Finnish housing fair, The Finnish association of architects SAFA

Design: Nomaji maisema-arkkitehdit (landscapearchitecture), MUUAN (architecture)

Collaborators: WSP Finland Oy (traffic), Ethica Oy (circular economy), Henry Lindgren (infrastructure)

Hartaanselänranta complements the existing urban structure of Oulu and completes the Suiston Luuppi, which circles the Oulujoki estuary, as a recreational route connecting the whole of Oulu. The estuary is the factor that most strongly builds Hartaanselänranta’s identity, and its ever-changing landscape serves as the starting point for the plan. The fluctuation of the water level, the seasons and the constantly changing estuary create an experiential environment where the element of water is emphasized with, among other things, natural stormwater solutions, shore areas with different characteristics and flood-resistant construction. Restoring the flooded Holstinsalmi to Mustasaari as a stormwater channel and the seasonal islands rising from the sea create a changing sense of time for the plan.

The potential offered by the diverse nature is utilized both in strengthening the residents’ relationship with nature and place, and as an experience offered to visitors. Delta-ness is developed from the point of view of movement and activities, aiming for a dynamic experience with the landscape and nature. Shoreline both protect and create new habitats for plant and animal species. Shore treatment and shore construction is diverse, enabling different forms of activity and experience, as well as access to the water in the entire planning area. A diverse blue-green infrastructure creates the basis for recreational activities and a healthy environment. It also promotes a year-round active and physical lifestyle.

The four key areas of the masterplan have all been approached in a unique way based on different lifestyles, services and recreational structures that support them. The goal is to build a sustainable and carbon-neutral northern city of the future that produces more than it consumes. Hartaanselänranta makes Oulu a forerunner in climate-wise and water-sensitive urban development.