Residents involved in urban planning
The residents of the City of Oulu have been involved in the development of the city district Hiukkavaara for many years. Hiukkavaara is being developed into a model area of sustainable urban planning, at different stages of which feedback and development ideas is collected. The aim is to increase quality in planning and a world-wide new-value obtaining implementation to make Oulu and Finland known. The first surveys regarding Hiukkavaara were conducted in 2013 through PATIO discussion forum, ZEF survey tool, and UBI displays. More than 200 local residents participated in the questionnaires.
The selected group of PATIO users also participated a unique event at the 3D virtual laboratory CAVE of Oulu University of Applied Sciences. The City Planning Architect Jere Klami sees the surveys carried out in different channels and the CAVE as excellent channels to engage local people in development work. A unique in the project, he said, was also that for the first time, young people in particular were included in the planning of the new area. Questionnaires carried out with different methods also enabled a reliable comparison of the results. Collected opinions support existing plans and new ideas have been found to be further developed. “Citizens’ opinions are of great importance when designing Hiukkavaara” said Coordinator Ari Saine. Saine sees the use of piloted methods very useful for urban planning and wants the process to be repeated at different stages of the design. The most recent method of user involvement is the 3D urban design application, where residents can design a part of the old Hiukkavaara. The 3D application was tested at PATIO in 2016. OULLabs user researcher and PATIO users also participated in a workshop where plans were taken forward.
“Cooperation with OULLabs was successful in planning of Hiukkavaara” Matti Matinheikki, City of Oulu
“PATIO and 3D CAVE are excellent forums for engaging residents in development work” Jere Klami, City of Oulu