The guidelines for strategic development in downtown Kemi are related to a typical phenomenon of this time. The vitality of small urban centers is diminishing, and unless a reaction is made, a spiral of negative development can occur. As a city, Kemi has suffered from changes in work and trade in recent years. However, new major investments in the forest industry and the very strong development of tourism are opening up new opportunities which need to be able to exploit their development potential in the intensifying competition between cities. Demographic change, as well as the increase in the senior population, will create new needs for urban development.
Kemi has done a lot of groundwork involving the citizens to develop the center. The aim of the development of the center is to improve the urban environment, to develop tourism, to increase the number of residents, visitors, service providers, and jobs. All these measures require investment (public and private). Kemi’s strategy is to be a people-friendly, creative and responsible, cozy hometown. Strategic goals include Attractive city, well-off residents and a smooth everyday life. It is not surprising, therefore, that its long-term development should not be possible. However, studies and strategies describe little concrete measures to achieve the objectives.
MUUAN’s mission has been to create a concrete program of measures and place individual measures on a timeline – a strategy for developing the center. Work began on guidelines for the center as a whole and in the next step, it was refined to area-specific measures. The work will continue in the third phase with an interactive design process bringing together relevant stakeholders from a development perspective. The purpose is to find development opportunities and models that are of interest to different actors, to make them visible, to find synergies between different developers and actors, and above all to develop a better Kemi.
Area size: 1,5 km², Development actions: 2018-2025
City of Kemi
Aleksi Rastas, Olli Metso, Anna Koskinen