Tallinn in the news: Tallinn among the least polluted capitals in the world

Tallinn in the News

March 2017 

Tallinn among the least polluted capitals in the world

A recent report by the World Health Organisation (WHO) places Tallinn among the world’s cleanest cities.  The report goes on to say that air pollution is one of the biggest problems that the world faces today. Tallinn’s nearest neighbour, capital city Helsinki places 8th on the list.  The Daily Telegraph praises Tallinn for its green spaces and green consciousness.

“Medieval Tallinn – with its imposing city walls and narrow cobbled streets – was not built with motor vehicles in mind. Driving around the ancient city centre is impractical, which has largely kept cars away.

Add to that the city’s bountiful green spaces and breezy coastal setting and you have the ingredients for one of the least polluted cities in the world,” the paper said.The least polluted capital cities in the world

10. Madrid, Spain

9. Monaco, Monaco

8. Helsinki, Finland

7. Tallinn, Estonia

6. Montevideo, Uruguay

5. Edinburgh, Scotland (UK)

4. Ottawa, Canada

3. Canberra, Australia

2. Wellington, New Zealand

1. Stockholm, Sweden

 The city compiles a new positive programme

After the conclusion of 2014-18 Tallinn positive programme, Tallinn City government has decided to launch a new positive programme for 2018-2021. The city council approved the bill on 9 March 2017.   Tallinn positive programme 2018-2021 represents a chance for the ordinary residents of Tallinn to get their voices heard. The ideas will be put together to be looked at by districts at conferences and other public forums.

 Acting Mayor Taavi Aas put the draft bill to the city council. “Tallinn positive programme 2014-18…. had a huge response rate from the public.

 “We initially launched this as an ongoing project to develop the city for its residents four years ago,” Aas said.  

“During this process, the districts gathered ideas from citizens and these were argued over in brainstorming session.

“As part of the process experts in different fields were involved. Thus, we could prepare “Tallinn positive program 2014-2018” in which we agreed on the goals and activities for the next five years. We have been fulfilling this program very successfully.  At the end of this year, we will have fully achieved the set tasks. Therefore, we must put together a programme for the new period,” Aas said.

Every city resident can offer ideas for urban development.  Aas emphasized that local government organs must base their activities on the needs and interests of the citizens

 “We are waiting to hear proposals, from any Tallinn resident who wants to speak. The goal is to encourage all citizens to offer new proposal no matter how innovative and even bizarre they may seem,” Aas said.

“We are expecting are all ideas, which will help people well-being more widely, or which support vulnerable social group and social justice,” Aas said adding that people will be encouraged to cast around for ideas so city government can make the best decisions and city leaders can know what is the most important things in the minds of residents that need solving.
Experts of communities and urban development and scientist will actively participate with the process, help to organise the proposals, and put together an activity plan.

Tallinners are satisfied with quality of life report shows

 A new report published on February 15 shows Tallinn’s citizens are satisfied with their quality of life. The report  was carried out by research firm Kantar Emor.Acting mayor, Taavi Aas, said that the research shows that Tallinners are satisfied with the quality of life in the capital city, the services on offer here, and the stable leadership. He added that the city’s administration can operate successfully and constructively.

 «According to the research, 95 percent of people are satisfied with the living environment and 93 percent of the districts. This trend has grown from year to year- every fourth Tallinner says that they don’t feel there something missing in their district.

 “Suitable objects are being established in the districts for residents but this shows the city leaders and citizens are in close co-operation, which is why the city has a growing synergy,” Aas added.

 Fourteen percent of Tallinners felt their district lacked some facilities, like a public swimming pool or public sauna but Aas pointed out that this too was being addressed.

 «In Mustamäe and North Tallinn, we have removed this shortcoming, On the estate of Mustamäe Akadeemia Street 30, we are due to put up by the end of next year, a public sauna and swimming complex,» Aas said.

 In North Tallinn, in the Autumn, a new contemporary and fashionable Sõle Sports centre will go up.  The city is planning that the multifunctional sports establishment will include a 25 metre 8 lane swimming pool, children’s bathing area, three square sports games halls, an eight-range fencing hall and two smaller sports halls.

 The city is also planning a swimming pool in the largely residential area of Lasnamäe in the neighbourhood of the already built ice rink.

 Nõmme and Haabersti district have had swimming pools for many years. There are also popular established public saunas in Kesklinn, Nõmme, and Lasnamäe.    Eighty six percent of respondents to the questionnaire said public transport had gotten better over the year. 95 percent of Tallinners owned a Transport card which allows you to travel for free on all buses, trams, trains and trolleybuses. 

Meanwhile, residents’ economic situation has improved.  The clear majority (71 percent) of Tallinners have not experienced economic problems in the last 12 months.

Detail planning to rejuvenate region around the City Hall

The City has now made plans in the short term for the City Hall and its surrounding area.

Acting Mayor Taavi Aas described the detail planning as a bold new project which will totally transform an area at the heart of the city.

“In addition to reconstructing the city hall as culture and conference centre, the surrounding neighbourhood now has the chance to get established as new businesses and living space,” Aas said.

“City hall and the area between the sea has as part of it the plan a five-storey business and living building.  However, there will still be sufficient public space,” Taavi Aas said.

Tallinn city hall and its surrounding area cover 11.5 hectares’ size area. The area is bound by Patarei Port to the North, Kalasadam to the West. South Sadama street and to the East Logi street.  The dominant urban construction in the region, are  Linnahall Tallinn City Hall and Kultuurikatel (Cultural Hub).

The waterfront area between Paljasaare and Russalka will be fitted out for general purpose use with a green corridor and green area.

Although the area under consideration is a built-up area and there are no wildlife or nature areas which require protection, designers are still required to work within rules that restrict construction in coastal areas or harm nature.

The goal is ebnergise the somewhat derelict coastal area.  The idea is to create a fit for purpose planned multifunctional offices in the regionThe focus will be on creating a space fit for communities instead of purely business premises.  The detailed planning has made it a prerequisite to making the functional buildings available for public use.  So, for example, the city hall’s roof will be a public walk area.

Taavi Aas, acting mayor praised the project as one that will help transform the centre.

“Without doubt it is expedient and in the public interest that an area which is in the immediate vicinity of the centre of the city and is so easily accessible should be in use quickly,” Aas said.

An important aim is to present the City Hall as both a monument and a landmark accessible to all. The detailed plan was putting together by the Tallinn city planning office in co-operation with AB Artes Terrae Limited.