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Reframing City Districts by leveraging cultural heritage

Reframing City Districts (ReCiDi) was a project, conducted in 2016-2017 which examineed urban transformation from the perspective of the city organization. The project focused on district-level development projects, which call for the involvement of public bodies, businesses, residents, and the non-profit sector.  The project was funded by the Finnish innovation funding agency, Tekes, under the European Union’s Regional Development Fund.

The research project’s central questions concerned:

  • The ways residents perceive and use their living spaces and environments.
  • Supporting fruitful and active dialogue between residents of the areas and the various actors contributing to its development.
  • Identifying the new roles the various actors can take on in this development.

Finding means of better realizing the potential of an area’s potential and addressing the housing preferences of residents to support and improve the development, and identifying how this is best realized for both current and prospective, future residents.

Researchers from the University of Turku and the University of Tampere sought answers to these questions through a study of the development of two specific residential areas in the respective cities, Tesoma in Tampere and Linnanfält in Turku.

The project also included the participation of the two city organizations as well as housing developers and architects, bringing together the public and private sector groups in interaction with the areas’ residents in the development of new models for co-operation in urban development.

This project, Reframing City Districts (ReCiDi), continued the work of Alliance members in the field of city planning and urban development, forming a  thematic connection to the Systemic Architectures for Sustainable Urban Innovation (SASUI) project where the WALCC, together with the University of Tampere and Aalto University, studied participatory city planning.

Field work for the ReCiDi project was conducted by researchers from the two universities, among residents of the Tesoma area of Tampere and the Castle Town area of Turku, and identified shared social and cultural heritage as a key aspect of forming collective visions among communities. The ReCiDi project aimed to form a new conceptual framework to help shape the collective identity and common vision necessary to realize the future low-carbon and sustainability targets.